Monthly Archives: September 2018

DIY Barnhouse Entry Table

I have been looking for a table to put into the entryway of the Barnhouse for a while.  I had something very specific in mind, but was not finding it anywhere for a reasonable price. After seeing this photo, I figured I would try building one that would fit the space, and I am pretty pleased with how it turned out! The total cost was about $30, and it took under 3 hours to make and stain. That’s not bad at all when you consider how long it can take to assemble ones you get in the mail, ha!

For those just starting with power tools, all you need is a drill and a miter saw. The miter saw is honestly my favorite power tools, and a great one to start with because it can cut all the angles you need (it also sits stable on a table, and has safety guards which makes it less intimidating). With a few cuts and some screws it was assembled, and staining was super simple using the Minwax Wood Finishing Cloths. I tested out the Walnut and Natural Oak, and ending up loving how the Natural Oak gave the bench a weathered barn wood look. The wipes come in a handy pack pre-soaked in stain, with a pair of gloves, so it’s easy and quick to clean up; making them perfect for a small project like this. Below are all the step and supplies!

What you need:
1×2 Cedar board (I used cedar, but any wood can be used)
2×2 Cedar board
1×6 Cedar board
1×3 Cedar board
Minwax Wood Finishing cloths – Natural Oak
Minwax Water Based Polycrylic
Gorilla Wood Glue
Exterior Wood Screws
Miter Saw
What to do:
I liked the width and look of the 1×6 with a 1×2 on each side. Measure and then cut all the boards to the desired length with the miter saw, my table is 5 ft.
Next, measure the width of the boards and cut the 1×2 to fit. Cut 2 pieces the same length.
Then, glue the piece to the boards (this will hold them together), one foot from each end, and let dry while you cut the other wood.
Cut the 2×2 boards into four 30in legs with 30 degree angles at each end.
Once the wood glue is dry, flip the top, and line up the legs on the cross board.
Start by drilling a pilot hole, going at an angle into the leg.
Drill in the wood screw following the pilot hole angle, repeat on the 4 legs.
Next measure and cut the 1×3 brace between two legs, then screw into place with two screws to stabilize the legs. Repeat on the other side.
Next cut the cross braces, Hold the the 1×2 piece in front of the bench at the angle you desire. With a pencil, mark the angle by the cross piece and under the the top (a little more then the center) I suggest cutting the cross braces a little long, so you have room to make adjustment cuts.
Once the cross braces sit flush to the brace between the legs, and under the top. Drill pilot holes at following the angle, and then drill in wood screws.
Prep the wood for staining by sanding the wood smooth, and then remove any sanding dust
Wipe on the stain with Minwax Wood Finishing Cloths using the pre-soaked cloths.
Wipe off the excess with a clean rag, let dry for an hour.
Finish by spraying on Minwax Water Based Polycrylic, let dry, and you are done!
I can’t wait to see your version, make sure to post on Instagram and tag with #ispydiy!

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Repurposing a Vintage Crate

Tools Needed:

  • Minwax Wood Cabinet Cleaner
  • Minwax Water Based Polycrylic
  • 4 casters
  • Screwdriver
  • Screws
  • Dust cloth

Old vintage crate ready to use in refurb project

I’ve had this old wooden beer crate so long I couldn’t recall where I got it. But when my son Eric, who enjoys a good craft beer, asked me to keep an eye out for a vintage beer crate, I was still able to recall where I had stuck this one.

1. Clean the wood with a wood-cleaning spray

Using Minwax wood cabinet cleaner spray to clean old vintage crateNeedless to say, it had accumulated some barn dirt, so the first thing to do was to clean off the dust and grime with Minwax Wood Cabinet Cleaner and a soft cloth.

2. Apply a protective polycrylic finish
Minwax polycrylic spray

As soon as it dried, I applied two coats of Minwax Water Based Polycrylic, knowing the clear finish would protect the original stenciled letters without affecting the color. The aerosol can made getting the polycrylic inside the crate even easier than using a brush.

3. Attach casters to the bottom of the crate

Attaching casters to old vintage crate makes it mobile

Then to make it easy for Eric to move it around in his apartment, I added four low casters to the underside of the crate.

Finished vintage crate project with casters

And with his birthday coming up, Eric will soon have a unique, vintage beer crate in his apartment for magazines, books — or whatever he chooses to store in it.

Until next time,

Thanks for stopping by!


How to DIY an Art Ledge

Ever since we made the art ledge in our living room four years ago, we’ve loved seeing them pop up in so many of your homes. They are such a functional way to display art, but finding one that is the perfect size for that wall in your home can be tricky (and expensive). Although it’s one of the easiest DIYs out there, we realized we never put together a proper tutorial to follow…until now! Follow this beginner-level DIY project to make your own in one day with a few simple supplies.

Materials Needed

1×12 pine board 2inch wood screws 1 1/4in wood screws
MINWAX® Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner MINWAX® Wood Stain MINWAX® Polycrylic (clear matte finish)
paper towels vinyl gloves

Tools Used

sanding block paint brushes driver
1/8inch drill bit wood clamps circular saw (optional)

Step 1: Prep the board

Believe it or not, you can make this entire ledge with one piece of pine wood. The pine board can be whatever length you like – ours is 10 feet. Out of this one 12in wide board we will create the three pieces for our shelf. Using your circular saw (or a table saw if you have one), rip the board into three separate pieces of these sizes:
– 5 1/2 inches
– 3 1/2 inches
– 3/4 inches

How to DIY an Art Ledge

If you do not have a circular saw (or a table saw), Lowe’s can rip the board for you into these pieces. There will be a small piece left over which you can save as scrap for future projects.

How to DIY an Art Ledge

Step 2. Screw the boards together

The 5 1/2in board is the base of the art ledge, the 3 1/2in board is the back and the 3/4in board is the front. Stand the back board up on top of the base, flush with the back and side edges, and clamp them together with wood clamps.

How to DIY an Art Ledge

Using the 1/8in drill bit, drill pilot holes about 12-16 inches apart through the bottom of the base into the back board, being careful not to drill out the sides of the board.

How to DIY an Art Ledge

Screw one 2in wood screw into each of the pilot holes, countersinking the heads only slightly so they are flush or just below the wood surface.

How to DIY an Art Ledge

Repeat this process for the front, 3/4in board. When drilling pilot holes, only drill through the base, and not into the 3/4in piece.

How to DIY an Art Ledge

How to DIY an Art Ledge

Step 3: Prep the ledge for stain

Using a fine grit sanding block (we used a 220 grit), sand all the edges of the art ledge to remove any splinters or roughness. Clean off with a dry rag or tac cloth.

How to DIY an Art Ledge

Once sanded, apply a coat of MINWAX® Pre-Stain Wood Conditioner. Soft woods like pine tend to take on too much stain in some areas and not enough in others, making the finish look blotchy or uneven. Conditioner evens out the pores in the wood and helps it take the stain evenly.

How to DIY an Art Ledge

Apply one even coat over the wood, let sit for 10-15 minutes, then wipe away any excess using a paper towel and let sit another 5 minutes.

Step 4: Stain the ledge

Once the wood conditioner has dried on the ledge, apply your preferred color of MINWAX® Stain. We used one coat of Special Walnut that was wiped off immediately after the entire ledge had been stained. It’s helpful to use vinyl gloves for this.

How to DIY an Art Ledge

How to DIY an Art Ledge

Step 5: Seal the ledge

One fear with wood projects is adding a sealant coat that will alter the look you achieve after staining. For this reason we used 3 coats of MINWAX® Polycrylic in Clear Matte finish, with 2 hours of drying time between each coat. It seals the wood without causing it to yellow, which can happen with some sealant coats. I encourage using vinyl gloves for this as well.

How to DIY an Art Ledge

Once the Polycrylic coats have cured, simply hang the board by screwing through the back piece, directly into the wall studs, with 3in wood screws.

How to DIY an Art Ledge

How to DIY an Art Ledge

All-in-all this project took just a few hours (most of that was drying time) and only a handful of supplies. It’s a great way to display art while having the option to quickly swap pieces in and out. Hope you can use this tutorial to make the perfect one for you home!

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Easy & Inexpensive DIY Wall Mount Jewelry Display


Tools Needed:

  • Minwax Water Based Wood Stain
  • Minwax Water Based Polycrylic Aerosol
  • Drill
  • Drawer pulls
  • Clean cloth (to wipe away excess stain)

Unfinished Wood Molding with Minwax Water Based Wood Stain

1. Sand and stain short section of unfinished wood molding.

Home improvement stores have a large selection of unfinished wood molding, so I decided to use a short section to make a display for my niece’s jewelry. After a light sanding, I opened a can of Minwax Water Based Wood Stain, choosing Perfectly Pink for her.

Applying Minwax Water Based Wood Stain to Wood Molding

2. Apply Minwax Water Based Wood Stain.

After brushing on my stain, I then wiped off any stain the wood did not absorb, so the wood grain could show.

Minwax Polycrylic Water Based Protective Finish Alongside Stain Wood Molding

3. Seal and finish with Minwax Water Based Polycrylic Protective Finish.

The Water Based Wood Stain dried quickly, so a little later I sealed the molding with a few coats of Minwax Water Based Polycrylic Protective Finish in a handy aerosol can.

Draw Pull Attached to Wood Molding Jewelry Display

4. Attach drawer pulls to use as jewelry-hanging hooks.

Then I measured and drilled holes for my hardware, which in this case was an assortment of drawer pulls I had on hand — or you can pick them up at your local hardware store.


Completed DIY Wall Mount Jewelry Displays in Pink and White

5. That’s it. You’re done. Project Complete.

And while I was making a pink jewelry display for my niece, I also made one for my wife with clear, square drawer pulls. Both are now ready to hang on the wall, where they will be both decorative and practical.

Until next time,

Thanks for stopping by!