Wood Wall in Office


My husband needed a small office in the old house that my workshop and retail store is in. If you are following this blog you might remember that I put a new laminate floor in the front room that houses my store.  I used the old flooring  taken from that area and put it in a bedroom upstairs.

I figured the wall colour might not be the best for Eric, so I first patched the cracks in the drywall, and then painted the ceiling in white. And then the walls were painted a light green called “Maid of the Mist” by Benjamin Moore.
On one wall I decided to put a huge map of the USA and Canada, Eric being a long-haul trucker has been to pretty much everywhere in these two countries. Around the map I wanted to put planks of wood to make a feature wall that he would face when sitting at his desk.
So, I first painted brown in the areas where the wood would be placed. (This avoids purple from showing through any gaps in the wood pieces)
I used 1″ x 4″ strapping and stained it in four different shades, from light to dark. After finding and marking where the studs were behind the drywall (I use a strong magnet) I cut the wood into lengths that ended on studs so that I could use my pin-nailer to nail the wood right into the studs. 
I worked around where the map would go and just overlapped it by about 1/2″ on each edge. I really should have had help putting up the map, it’s laminated in plastic and fell on my head a few times, leaving some crease marks, unfortunately. (I did all of this work myself)
In the corner behind the door there were some shelves made of pressed wood. I replaced them with shelves I made from the same stained wood that I put on the walls. The corner area was painted white, I’m thinking I may go back and paint that the same green as the walls, but it’s white for now.
 It all turned out quite nicely, I’ve just been looking for a good used solid wood desk. If I can’t find one I’ll have to make one, I guess.

Getting Organized with Tool Racks

For those of you new to this blog, just a quick overview.  I am renovating a house that is just around the corner from my house, to be used as my workshop and a small retail space where I will sell what I make.

I took down walls and turned two rooms (previously a living room and an office), into one, which is my workshop.  Beside that, is the kitchen and dining area.  I haven’t shown a photo of the kitchen (I will in a future post), but this is the corner, perhaps where a dining room table would be placed when this was used as a house.

I will use the kitchen and dining area as my painting spot and also a place to keep some supplies. My thought was to put the wall mounted bins that I just posted about, as well as the bookcase that I made, in this corner.

Of course, seeing that the walls really needed painting, it made sense to paint them before attaching anything.  Because I knew once I put things on the walls, they would not get painted for a long time, if ever!

So, I put a primer on and then I painted the walls with the same Sea Foam paint that I used in the workshop (because I had some left over) on the top and Simply White on the bottom.  I did not remove casings, trim nor flooring.

I then attached the bins and my bookcase on the wall, and put my filing cabinets on the floor beneath. They hold cabinet handles, picture frames, shop tool manuals and some other odds and ends.  I also put my safe here, it came with the house.

Some of my woodworking books are in the bookcase, other books are still waiting to be sorted out.
Behind this corner is an angled wall in my workshop.  It is where I am hanging my clamps and other tools on french cleats.
I also have a pegboard for some hand tools, beside my drill press.

The window adds a lot of light into the workshop.

As you can see, I’m getting organized.  I think I need some inspirational signs above my tools racks.  I’ll have to find someone to make me some 😉

I’ll talk about the clamp racks in a bit more detail next time.

The Chalkboard Wall

As I said in a previous post, I decided to make a chalkboard wall in the store area of my workshop house.  Actually this wall has been painted for a few months, but I needed to wait for the floor to be in before I could continue.  And the floor couldn’t go in until the walls were done (because I didn’t want to get paint splatters all over it)… so I finished the planked walls and the laminate floor and finally it was time to get to the chalkboard wall. It’s actually a wall and a bit, because I decided to turn the corner and paint the chalkboard paint to the left of the door that leads to the workshop.

This is how my wall looked after I put the freshly painted baseboards on:

Now, chalkboards need to be conditioned before they are used. If you don’t condition a chalkboard you will always see the first thing you wrote on it.  To condition you prime the chalkboard by laying chalk on it’s side and cover the whole surface:

Then you rub in the chalk with your fingers and wipe it down with a cloth:

I felt my chalkboard wall needed something else, so I made a frame for it using lumberyard 1x4s, some stain and two coats of shellac:

The corners are mitred:

And then I added a little something for fun:

So, the retail area is basically done, although I do need to make myself some type of counter to sit at, in front of the chalkboard wall.  And I need to get my creations in there!

Featured at:
Elizabeth and Co.

Sharing at:
Elizabeth & Co. Vintage
The Creative Muster Linky Party
Handmade Hangout
Shabbilicious Friday
Treasure Hunt Thursday
Make It Pretty Monday
Talk of the Town
DIY Like a Boss

Retail Space Walls Planked (or is it Tiled?)

I have been working on the walls of my retail space, which is a former bedroom and front hallway in the new house that I’m turning into my workshop.  Although I purchased the flooring a few months ago, I felt it best to do the walls first so that I wouldn’t drip paint on the new floors. As any of you DIYers know, it’s better to do things in the correct order.

At first I thought I would just paint my walls in the space that will house my products, but for two reasons I decided against that.  Firstly, the walls were not in good condition due to the fact that I removed a wall, closet and door in order to make the two areas into one.  (…and anyone reading this blog for a time will know that I don’t really enjoy patching and mudding drywall).  Secondly, I will need to put a lot of nails or screws (and maybe even shelving) in this room, in order to display my signs and other things I make.  I felt that hanging something off of drywall would not be as good (solid) as having some type of thicker material to “grab” the fasteners.  Initially I thought of horizontal boards spaced about a foot apart to help with that problem. Then, I started seeing quite a few bloggers who “planked” walls in their houses, and I liked the look, so decided to try that!

So, for a recap, this is the area I’m working on and this is how it looked when we bought the place:
(standing in the front hallway, the door goes into the bedroom)

This is after I removed the wall and door:

And, here is after I took out the flooring:

Okay, so what I did was get ten sheets of 1/4″ plywood underlayment at the lumber store.  It comes in 4′ x 8′ sheets which I had the store cut to 4′ x 4′.  This is much easier for me to handle and I did not want to put up any 8′ lengths of boards anyway, so the maximum length of my boards will be 4′. I primed all twenty sheets, which was made easier by having a basically empty workshop, and then cut the 4′ sections into strips of just over 5 7/8″ wide on my tablesaw.  This gave me 8 strips per 4′ length, or 16 strips from each 4′ x 8′ sheet. For anyone not doing the math, this is 160 strips!!

I proceeded to find the studs on all the walls (I use a strong magnet) and had all strips end and begin on studs. The studs were not at the usual 16″ apart, but this is a very old home, and this front section was added on at some point, so it didn’t surprise me. The ceiling is not at all level, so that was also something I had to deal with (and also wasn’t surprising!)

I started on the end wall, using my nailing gun to put nails wherever I found studs.  I used pennies to horizontally space out the strips (do not ask me how many times I had to pick up pennies that fell out of the slots, I lost count after 427) and I also staggered the boards from end to end, like tiling, with a space between the end of one board and the beginning of the next. (Most people butt them up together, but I wanted the visual look of the spaces both horizontally and vertically)

Here are some progress photos (this took quite a few days of work):

Now it’s time to paint the walls!

Goodbye Chestnut

We had two large trees in the front yard of the new workshop house.  The one on the left was a chestnut tree and was dying.  You can see from this photo taken in the summer when we bought the place that the tree on the left had dead branches.  The tree on the right, we’ve been told, is a dwarf maple, planted by the town after it had to widen the street and take out some nice trees many, many years ago.

Well, a neighbour said he could use the wood from the chestnut, so he came and cut it down.

I am working in the new place everyday and even though it was only a few months ago that I started this renovation, it’s hard to believe that it once looked like this in the new workshop room:

This is how it looks today:

I’m working on my retail space right now, and it’s turning out really well.  I will post about that soon…

Painting the Workshop Walls

I picked a colour for the walls in my workshop.  It is Benjamin Moore Sea Foam and is a very, very light turquoise.

 In fact it is almost white, it’s so light, but that’s what I wanted, something to just stand out a little bit over my Simply White trim (that is not painted yet).

I really don’t think this photo shows the colour at all, it looks white on my monitor!  This is the first coat (on the right) over a white primer that is over a grey/brown wall that was here when I bought the place.

Tomorrow I’ll do the second coat and then get started on the trim.

Painted Washroom

I just got back from painting the washroom in my workshop.  It’s so nice to see this room all freshened up.  I had some blue paint leftover from the master bedroom at my last house, so I thought I would use up some of that.  I also thought it might give me a clue as to what colour to paint the main workshop area.




Now I love blue, and this looks quite light in the photo, but it’s a bit darker than that in person, and too blue for my workshop.  (It looks more like a baby boy bedroom colour to me.)

So… I will find something lighter for my workshop walls, I am currently thinking a very very light turquoise.