Wednesday, October 31, 2012

How to Make a Custom Bedskirt from an Existing Bedskirt

I've gotten a few requests for how I made my bedskirt, since I made it before I started my blog I thought I would do a quick post on how I did it.

Here's how! 

I started with an existing queen bedskirt that I got on clearance from Target for around $6 and about 3 yards of fabric, Covington Windsor Citrus.

I cut a few rectangles for my panels with allowance for hems 3'3" x 1'5" (x4)  2'9" x 1'5" (x2) and the piece to go behind the seams 6" x 1'5"(x3) 8" x 1'5" (x2)

I sewed the raw edges, and then attached it to the bedskirt by sewing at the top. The 6" pieces were placed behind the larger rectangles, 8" in the corners, pinned and then sewed.

This could easily be turned into a non sewing project by using no sew tape (just make sure to do a test piece first to make sure you can't see through once ironed)  Heat n' Bond is my favorite no sew adhesive, I purchased it at Joann fabrics.

I found this method very easy! Since I am a visual person, having an existing template to work with was very helpful to make sure that it was going to fit.


1. If purchasing a new bedskirt, make sure to put it on your bed first to see if it will work. Mine was about an inch too short, so I increased the length of my fabric.

2. Make sure that your 6" and 8" pieces are wide enough to hide the bedskirt behind.

3. Make sure to check your yardage needed, it may differ based on the height of your bedskirt. With the way the pattern was run, I was able to use the entire 54" width and non printed edges of the fabric and get the two 2'9 x 1'5" on the side of the 3'3" x 1'5" pieces. I think I only used about 2.5 yards of fabric ...

and that's it! I would say the whole project took about 3-4 hours.

Please let me know if something isn't clear, I made it a while ago so I might of missed something!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Our drill and we have shelves!

Sunday I said to David "Our drill has really lasted a long time!" and yesterday I got it out to install the shelves, and nothing, the battery was fully charged, but not a sound - I guess that's what I get! (has this happened to anyone else?) So off to Home Depot, they didn't carry the drill that we wanted and the next one was double the price, so I bought a smaller one for $30 (with $10 coupon from Ace Hardware, you can use printed competitors coupons!) We will still get the one that we want from Amazon - a comparable Dewalt , but it will be good to have two drills so we can work at the same time.

Yesterday I was able to paint the outside, better photos to come but I am in love with the color, it is a light slightly minty blue, very pretty! I began installing the shelves before David got home and then we finished all but one last night (a middle one on the track)

Now we have left to do: one more shelf, the doors, the top, and finish painting!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Credenza Update

Whew! We worked most of the weekend on the credenza and I am happy to report that we are almost done!

As you can see, we painted all of the interior pieces separately prior to installation. That's A LOT of square feet, so it took longer to paint than a dresser or table (my typical painting jobs) but the hard part (the interior) is done! Now we just have to paint the outside and install the interior shelves.

In addition to new wood, we used a few of the legs from when we shortened our counter height chairs to dining height. 4 cabinet doors for (2 for the sides and 2 for the middle dividers) 

Also, in the middle we installed tracks for pullout shelves (removed for painting) for the Silhouette Cameo and scanner. The hole is for wires to go through ...

We got one of six shelves for flat storage installed last night and decided to call it quits when our drill batteries died. 

Annabelle was getting a little bored too!

I love how it is coming together and can't wait to see it finished!  

Hope you had a great weekend! 


Also, through Wednesday, use coupon code SMDDESIGNS20 at checkout for 20% off at my Etsy shop 

Friday, October 26, 2012

Crendeza Update

This week we finally got all four doors on! Let me tell you this was no small feat - the spacing had to be so precise. When we thought we got it right, the doors would hit when opening ... it was a lot of David moving the board ever so slightly holding tightly and me screwing the board back in place.

This was my first time installing cabinet doors, and I now know why the hinges of kitchen cabinet doors are typically a few inches from each other ha!

Our credenza is fairly big (~66" long) which = lots of wood = lots of $$. We were able to cut back on cost by reusing cabinet doors from Habitat Restore. We have four on the front and two on the sides, at $2 each, this was a great way to save money! Don't worry it's getting painted :)

I've been thinking this week about the interior shelving, wanting to fit everything, here is what I came up with.

On the left, the laser print will sit on the bottom and the top will be open shelving. In the middle the large printer will be on the bottom with two shelves on tracks above for the silhouette and scanner, both need additional space when in use, but they will fit nicely inside when not in use. Finally the right will have several shelves for paper and flat storage.

I'm excited to finish, fingers crossed this weekend!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

This time last year ...

we were driving to CA!

Whew! it was a whirlwind! Here it goes: October 20th David flew into DC from CA, he had just started on the project he is currently on. October 21st, we went up to NY for David's brother's wedding (fun time!) October 23rd, went back to Frederick to pack up and say goodbye to our family that lives there. October 24th, went to Knoxville to pack up our apartment. October 25th, movers came and we started driving to CA!

You can see we didn't make it far on the first day, since we got a very late start ... but Nashville was fun to stop in. We had a late dinner in our hotel with live music (it is Nashville after all!)

We stopped in Oklahoma City ... not too much to see here (leaning water towers and huge windmills were the exception).

Next Albuquerque, the landscape really starts to change around here. The bottom left picture is the El Malpais Lava beds (the black within the green is hardened lava)

The plataeus and pretty colors were breathtaking! The picture doesn't do it justice, one of those places that you have to go it, but the shot of David and Annabelle is at the Petrified National Forest in AZ (I highly recommend if you are in the area!)

We stopped at the Grand Canyon, even though it was a little hazy it was breathtaking, it is massive!  (I like how Annabelle is looking over the edge, but keeping her distance, it was high!)

And the Hoover Dam, stunning! The bottom right photo is David looking off of the Mike O'Callaghan – Pat Tillman Memorial Bridge, which bypasses and overlooks the Hoover Dam. It 900 ft high, I was too scared to look over :)

We made a quick stop for lunch in Las Vegas and then made our way to CA!

We have loved living here for the past year! We aren't sure how much longer we'll be here, but we are enjoying the sun and sand while we've got it!


Also, thinking about driving ... we really want to take Annabelle to MD for Christmas this year, but I think she is a little tall to fit under the seat on the plane (and putting her under the plane worries me). Does anyone have experience flying with a 21 lb beagle/jack russell?

We were considering driving but don't have the time with work schedules (plus in December probably not the best timing!)

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

20% off at Sarah M. Dorsey Designs Etsy Shop!

This week I am offering 20% off at my Etsy shop to thank you for reading! Use the coupon code: SMDDESIGNS20 at checkout.

Recently I've added two stencils:

A moroccan style medallion, a smaller version of my rug stencil ... I am loving this mint and yellow combo!

and a fretwork inspired stencil as pictured with my coral dresser

I also added a pre drawn pet silhouette print option to the shop at a lower price than my custom drawings, with choice of background

stripe ...

quatrefoil ...

or scalloped

Hope you enjoy!

Coupon code: SMDDESIGNS20 is good for 20% off any order for the next week!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Fall Porch and Outdoor X table

Over the weekend I finally finished my fall entry ... 

We built an X leg table out of extra fence posts (it took only 1 1/2 6' posts)

The top was constructed of three 20" fence posts with sides that were screwed into place.

The angles for the x were determined by drawing a rectangle for the height and width, laying posts in an x and drawing lines for the cuts 

A small piece of board was cut to even out the sides and the legs were screwed into place. And that's it, so easy and only took about 1 hr and a few dollars!

I added a few pumpkins ...

I spray painted one white and added gold polka dots with liquid gold leaf and cotton rounds cut into a smaller circle. 

I love the bright yellow and red straw flowers! 

I also painted the top and bottom of a little pumpkin with liquid gold leaf after spray painting white. 

The gold magnolia wreath is holding up well! The leaves have dried out, but it is holding up well to the gusty wind that we've been getting recently.

It is finally starting to feel like fall here, so I finished just in time :)

Monday, October 22, 2012

Weekend in Photos | Lots of DIY in the Works!

Sorry for no post on Friday, last week I was a little under the weather and it finally caught up with me.

This weekend was productive though! Including a lot of DIY projects in the works ...

Saturday we picked up the remaining supplies for the credenza in the the office area!

Then we got to work - it took a little extra planning because we are reusing some cabinet doors, which required us to stick to some specific measurements. (top right) Here it is on its back looking from the side, David is working on installing the front cabinet doors. The spacing was tricky, accommodating for the the hinges and door movement, but we have two installed, two to go! Now we have the interior shelving, the top and the legs to go.

And while David was working on the credenza, I started a little outdoor table made out of left over fence posts from our planters, here and here. It is now sitting by our front door, photos soon!

Finally, last night I cut out a smaller version of the Moroccan rug stencil to use as a wall stencil (for sale in my Etsy shop). We also worked on the trellis stencil from last week, but didn't make any final decisions so no finished shots yet.

See you soon with some finished pictures! And if you wish to see some of my process shots (as well as a few of my cute puppy), you can find me on instagram at sarahmdorseydesigns

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Office Update + My Etsy Shop at LeLe Pets Today!

The printer/paper situation is a little out of control in my office (the other half of the living room) ...  two printers, a silhouette, and scanner take up a lot of room, currently they are hanging out on two side tables and wires are everywhere which = me not happy!

So to combat the printer, paper, and wire situation we are building a credenza to nicely tuck it all away. We are still gathering supplies ... but here is what I have in mind.

The plan is for it to sit under the floating gallery wall and have 4 doors to easily access everything.

I've also been thinking about swapping my current desk for one that is narrower and longer, changing out the overhead light for a simple drum shade, and more comfortable desk chairs.

After searching for months, I recently found a great source for vintage office chairs from Jenny at The Little Green Notebook and found a pair of Eames molded plastic chairs for $189 plus $75 shipping for the pair!!

The fabric definitely needs to go, but for genuine Herman Miller chairs I'll take it (you all know that I love a makeover anyways!)

Also, the renderings of my office were completed in Sketch Up and I am playing with the rendering plug in Maxwell Render. I wanted to try out the free version (lower resolution images) first before the full version.

So happy to see the office coming along!

Also, I'm finishing up my fall decor, photos soon!


And last but not least, today I am selling my animal silhouettes prints for 20% off at LeLe Pets, stop by today to take a look! Sale starts at noon pacific time.

LeLe Pets is a member only site, you can click here for your invite

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Fall Decor: Gold Magnolia Wreath

When it comes to seasonal decorations, I like to keep it pretty simple. This year for fall, I decided to make a wreath and after seeing Britt's fall inspiration from Gus & Lula.

I decided to use magnolia leaves because I liked the shape and thought the thickness of the leaf would hold up well. Since I am using real leaves, I don't plan to keep it past the season, but I hope that it holds up for the next few months.

I gathered some leaves ...

cut a 14" foam floral wreath in half so it will sit flush on the door and I'll have one for Christmas, thanks for the idea Pinterest!

I then poked diagonal holes with a meat thermometer ...

filled with a little craft glue and put the leaves in at an angle. I ended up with about three rows of overlapping leaves.

Once the glue dried (about an hour or two) I sprayed it with Krylon's gold spray paint

I used a 3M hook to mount it to the door, tied ribbon around the wreath fairly tight so that it wouldn't move as much, and attached it to the hook.

Total cost: foam wreath was about $4 (Michaels with 40% coupon) and gold spray paint was also about $4 (Michaels with 40% coupon), leaves were free!

about $8, plus I have the other half of the wreath to use later!

Total time was about an hour or two ...

I'm working on the rest of our porch decor, stop by soon for pics!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Weekend in Review + What I'm Working on

This weekend we took a trip down the coast to visit Santa Barbara, the outlets and a few antique shops north of LA.

I found these great knobs at Anthro in the clearance section. I'm hoping to use a set on a printer/paper storage cabinet that we are working on.

We visited Avila Valley Barn where I found these beauties, apparently everyone in slo county had the same idea ... it was packed! I'm finally working on some fall decor!

and we started designing a new stencil, still a ways to go, but it is beginning to take shape!

I'm off to work on my fall wreath/porch, photos soon!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Color me Coral

This post has been sponsored by Sherwin-Williams. All opinions are 100% mine, if you've been reading for a while, you probably know that :) 

Over the weekend I started painting this dresser that I picked up at a thrift store a few months ago, solid wood (maybe oak?), dovetail drawers, for $8 - yes please!

It doesn't look too bad in the photo above, but looking a little closer, it had been repainted with a thick nap roller, leaving a textured surface. 

Using good supplies/techniques and will produce a much better result and save you time if you ever decide to repaint. Read on to see what supplies I like!

Enter in lots of sanding ...

I used my orbital sander with 60 grit sandpaper to remove most of the textured surface, and then went back over with a 120 grit sandpaper to smooth everything out. 

I patched a few holes with wood filler and filled the holes from the old hardware. One was broken so those definitely needed to be swapped out. I decided on brass ring pulls, so new holes were drilled about 6" from the edge.

After removing the dust with a microfiber cloth, I used SW Premium Wall & Wood Primer, I find that it has good coverage and adhesion, gives a smooth result while creating a surface that the top coat adheres well to. 

After allowing the primer to dry I used a fine grit sandpaper to quickly sand the surface. I then wiped it down with a microfiber cloth to remove any dust.

For the top coat, I decided to use one of my favorite paints, SW Pro Classic, it is water based with a hard enamel finish like an oil based, but without the fumes and the brush cleans up with water. The enamel surface is ideal for furniture in high traffic areas for maximum durability. 

I used two thin coats and mixed in a little XIM extender to level out any brush strokes prior to drying. The key to reducing brush stokes, is using thin coats and not over brushing, it will level out when it dries. My favorite brush is the Purdy Clearcut Glide 1.5" and 3".  

I decided on SW Ardent Coral, a fun, bright, pink coral for the top coat. I'm most likely putting it in my closet for additional storage, but before I move things around I took a few photos with my new stencil.

I picked up a partial piece of drywall at Habitat Restore for $2.50, and plan to use it to try out my new stencils. Stenciled wall is also SW Ardent Coral.

I made my DIY Brass Ring Pulls for the hardware.

Much much better than the previous textured surface! And I love the bright pop of color, making it a great accent piece!  

Stencil is now available through my Etsy shop, click here to view 
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