Archive | Before & After

Garage storage ideas

In our last garage post (and video) we covered part 1 of our garage series: how we patched, repaired, and painted our very sad looking walls.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com In today’s post, we’re covering how we turned that clean slate into something actually functional too. The goal: to be able to use this space as a workshop AND still be able to pull both of our cars in. We took it from this:

DIY garage storage solutions and organization - evanandkatelyn.com To this! Holy crap!!

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com You can watch the video that covers everything below, or keep scrolling for all our choices, steps, and tips in blog-format.

[Before we keep going, I want to pause and say if you have a second it would mean SO much to us if you’d like our video or subscribe to our channel. Since we’re brand new to YouTube, every view, like, and subscription makes a huge difference for us. Click here to see the whole channel. Thank youuuuu! We’re doing a big goofy happy dance right now!]

And now, all the details and unattractive photos you’ve been waiting for. As you saw in the video, this is where we started…
So the challenge is that we were asking a lot from our little garage. We’re asking it to house two cars, have all the functionality we need for our DIY projects, and act as a workshop for making products. Oh yeah, and be organized and look nice while you’re at it.

When we bought the house, we actually did inherit a decent amount of storage. It was just… not how we would have done it.

There were some pegboards, but they had been cut up and placed around three different spots that didn’t all make sense. For instance, the right side of our garage has a step that gives us a few feet of space between our cars and the wall, so it would be perfect for something that required more space, like shelving. But a big pegboard, which sits more flush against the wall, was taking up half of that wall. And since we had extra space in front of it (and no room anywhere else), stuff always ended up getting piled there. Plus, these pegboards weren’t in the best of shape. They had lots of gouges, unusable holes, and so on.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We inherited some ok shelves too, but the shelves were on brackets that were screwed into drywall (instead of studs) so we couldn’t put too much weight on them. Also, the ones on the left side of our garage made it hard for Evan, who parks on the left, to get out of his car without hitting something, so placement wasn’t always great.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com The garage also came sporting some old cabinets and a wire rack, which we planned on sprucing up and continuing to use.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com In addition to these bits and pieces of storage, we’ve added our own over the years. We have a big Uline shelving unit for heavy and big things (if you squint your eyes you can see it behind the wood, cords, and bike).

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We bought a small tool storage/work table when we first moved in that we very quickly outgrew.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com So then recently we built a giant rolling work table that better suited our needs, but took up a lot of space.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com And we built a rolling wood cart to hold extra scrap wood (see it to the right of the work table?).

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com So I guess what I’m trying to say is… we have a lot of tools and project materials and general garage-y stuff, so we have a lot of storage to try and corral that stuff, but then the storage units themselves just end up being more stuff to take up space. We knew something had to change.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com STEP 1: Declutter garage (and fix the walls while we’re at it)

We got rid of as many things as possible. This included a bunch of stuff we never used, plus the storage we decided to ditch. We Craigslisted the black tool table and ripped off the old shelving and pegboards.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Then, as y’all know from our last post/video [LINK], we pulled everything away from the walls so we could patch, repair, and paint them, giving ourselves a clean slate to move forward.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com STEP 2: New pegboards

Pegboards are pretty much a garage staple in our minds. Even though we got rid of our old ones, new ones were first on our list of things to buy. You might view pegboards as sort of a basic item without much variance between one and another, which honestly is kinda how I felt before this project, but then we found these:

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Wall Control pegboards. They’re made of steel, they come in modular panels, they have built-in stand off, they’re incredibly sturdy, and they are just about as pretty as pegboards can be. (Side note, no, they are not sponsors, we just LOVE these things).

Here’s what you’ll need to install them:

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We decided to put these on the left side of our garage, because we needed this wall to have storage that was more flush (so Evan could still get out of his car).

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com These pegboards are made to work with the normal spacing of normal studs in a normal house. What we found in our garage is that the studs were a little off in some places, and really off in others, so they didn’t count as “normal”. To get around this, we used 1×4’s to bridge between our studs.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com First, use a stud finder to find your studs.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com *wink!

And mark them on the wall.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We had eight feet worth of panels so we got three eight-foot 1×4’s, and placed them horizontally at three different heights because the panels have attachment points at their top, middle, and bottom.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Use a level so your 1×4’s aren’t all kittywampus, and grab a buddy if you can because it helps to have one person holding one end while the other person screws into the other. Screw the pegboards into the boards at their top, middle, and bottom attachment points.

Because the pegboards have built in stand off, screwing them into the boards doesn’t make you lose any usable space like with a traditional pegboard.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Because we bridged the studs, we could attach our pegboards to the 1×4’s without having to worry about hitting a stud.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Each pegboard panel has six attachment points (three on each side) that you’ll need to screw into your 1×4’s.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Then it was just a matter of putting up our tools. There’s something about a fresh pegboard that makes you feel organized and on top of life. DIY garage storage and organization - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com STEP 3: New shelving

Shelves were another item that we still wanted, we just had requirements that the old ones didn’t mean. Mainly, we wanted them to be easily adjustable, and able to hold more weight than our old ones.

We ended up finding this rail and bracket system called EverBilt. It’s kinda like what you might find in a closet system: different lengths of rails and brackets that hook into them. Then you just use wood planks as the shelves themselves.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We love the idea of this because we want to be able to move shelves around easily if we need a different set up in the future.

To install these, you’ll need:

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We planned to put all our shelving on the right side of the garage, where we have the stepped up area (because we have a little more space between the wall and the car on that side).

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Again, the first step to this project is finding and marking your studs. And again, our studs were really wonky. Like… they seemingly disappeared anywhere above five feet in some areas.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Meaning we had to go with a different part of the wall on this side of the garage, but it was fine and honestly probably worked out even better in the end because it’s closer to where our worktable ended up.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Mark your studs at several different heights and draw a vertical line connecting your marks. You’ll attach the rails vertically along the studs, and you want to make sure you hit the stud with every screw.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Screw a rail into each stud. You’ll need at least two rails obviously, but if you need more weight support or if you’re spanning a wider area, you can do more.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Then all you need to do is add a bracket onto the rails at each height you want a shelf. They just pop right in, super easy.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We used 12 inch deep boards for our shelves, in lengths of 6 feet since that was the widest we could go on this wall. The weight of the boards makes them stay in place pretty solidly on the brackets.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com The best thing is if we need to adjust the height of a shelf, it’s so easy to bump the brackets up or down and place the board back on top.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We used these shelves for things like drawers of safety gear, boxes of extra product and supplies for our pop up shops, and our OCD-embracing screw, nail, and general hardware organizers.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We ended up living these so much, we added a couple shelves above our pegboards too using some of the short rail lengths (they come in several lengths). We use these for extra wood that’s too long for our rolly cart and items we don’t need frequent access to.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com STEP 3: Track system

Next we added a track system to hold the typical long awkward items you have in a garage, like shovels, rakes, etc. We decided this would go on the left wall next to the pegboards (because these tend to be more flush against the wall too). There are a lot of systems to choose from, but we went with the Rubbermaid FastTrack system. Mainly because it’s got a big variety of hooks, was very modular, and had great reviews.

To install this, you’ll need

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com First, you guessed it, find and mark your studs. We used the 1×4 trick again to bridge between them.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Then attach the track onto your 1×4. The secondary benefit of using the 1×4 is that it gives a little bit of extra space between the items you’re hanging from the track and your wall, meaning your wall won’t get as dirty or beat up.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com The cover should slide right over your track.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Then clip on your hooks. There are all sorts of different types, depending on what you need to hang.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We filled it up pretty fast with brooms, shovels, rakes, trimmers, etc. It can even hold super heavy stuff like our ladder.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We love how modular and sturdy this is!

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com STEP 4: Wire rack

After installing our new storage, we turned our eye back to our existing storage. This little wire rack has rested humbly in our corner for years and we actually use it, so it was a keeper. But he was dirty, chipped, and slightly off white. So we gave him a good scrubbing and a coat of white semigloss spray paint.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Then we added him on the wall back where he used to be, except this time we screwed him into studs (seriously, it seems like NOTHING in this garage had been attached to studs).

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com STEP 5: Cabinets

Our cabinets, which came with the house, originally started out pretty much the ugliest brown you could ever imagine. So one day we couldn’t take it any more and we painted them with some white paint we just happened to have on hand. What we didn’t think about was that it was flat paint, so it got really dirty really easily. We had some of our paint leftover from painting the walls, which was Behr Ultra Premium Plus off-the-shelf white in a satin sheen, so we decided to try that.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Hopefully painting them with extra paint won’t come back to bite us in the butt again, but they definitely look better now and are easier to clean!

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We also gave the knobs a new coat of paint. They had been painted over so many times that it had built up quite a bit.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com To get off the old paint and prep them for a new coat, we used this trick. First, screw a knob onto your drill.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Then use one hand to control the drill, and the other hand to hold emery cloth around the knob. As the drill spins, the cloth sands the paint off the knob.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com It’s a little hard to tell in the photo because the old knob color was white and the paint that had gotten on it was white, but it was much smoother!

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We spray painted them semigloss white to even them out (I know, seems kinda redundant, but it helped give them a more finished look)

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Then we reattached the knobs and called these cabinets done.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com STEP 6: Moving stuff into place, DIY dolly shelf, DIY drying racks

The step was kinda like “ok we are basically done, let’s move stuff back, wait let’s DIY a couple things while we’re at it!” So not so much a step we did, more like a series of fortunate distractions as we wrapped this thing up.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We moved our Uline back where it used to live to the left of the cabinets and loaded up our big, heavy items.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We used to keep extra tile and bricks from the house stacked underneath it, but it was like a breeding ground for cobwebs, dirt, and dead bugs back there because they were so heavy, we could never move them to clean. So we decided to convert an old dolly to a low profile rolling tile storage cart (really, this would work for anything low profile and heavy).

To install this, you’ll need

  • 1/2″ plywood
  • Some extra scrap wood to bring the lower center part level with the ends
  • Screws

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com The dolly has a higher, padded part on either end, and slightly lower wooden parts across the middle. So Evan cut some 1×4’s down to size so that they could sit on top of the wooden parts and make the middle of the dolly level with the ends of the dolly.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Then we used some 3/4” thick plywood that was just a little wider and longer than the dolly and secured it on top with four screws. We drilled through the plywood, through the 1×4’s, into the wooden part of the dolly’s frame.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We loaded her up with tile and she fit snuggly under our Uline. Now it’s about a billion times easier to move the tile around when we need to. That stuff is HEAVY.

Side note, I looked into it and a dolly like this is only $19. In a lot of cases, that’s cheaper than buying wood + four casters, and it’s already put together for you. So if you’re needing a quick and simple rolling cart, might be worth just getting a dolly and popping some plywood on top!

Next we added our rolling wood cart to the right of the cabinets. We had hoped to put it there, and last minute realized it was about 6 inches too wide (that’s what we get for dreaming big and not measuring). We didn’t get photos of this step, but we cut off some overhanging surface, moved a couple casters, and baaaaarely got it to fit. Woo!

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com The space under the cabinets was begging for our work table, but before rolling it in we took a few to add a little more functionality to it. We use this table for all sorts of projects, including working on our products, which often require time to dry (wet paint, cement that needs to cure, stain that’s soaking in, etc). We used to use the oh so glamorous technique of dismantling cardboard boxes, laying them flat on the floor, and splaying all our drying goodies across those. Which technically worked, but was not space efficient at all.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We were liking our shelves from earlier so much, we got more short rails and more brackets to built a drying rack area under our worktable. We attached the rails to the table legs, popped in the brackets, and used planks of particle board (?????) as shelving. I can’t believe we never thought of this before – it is SUCH a better use of space! No more tip toeing around drying products all over the floors!

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Once our drying rack was loaded up, we rolled the work table under the cabinets and it was literally a perfect fit. I’m kind of in disbelief that this worked. Our Tetris skills of yore were clearly put to good use.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Moment of Truth

All of our stuff corralled? Check. Usable work space for projects and products? Check. Space to pull in both of our cars?

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Check!!!!!!

Y’all. This is for real. And I kinda can’t believe it. Especially when you look back on where this started.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com We kinda feel like now that our garage is in order, there’s no stopping us. Feel like making a DIY cutting board or a bench? No biggie, our wood is no longer buried under a mountain of disgrace. Need to crank out a new product order? No longer do we have to turn our garage floor into a sea of half-dried items.

DIY garage storage solutions - evanandkatelyn.com Expect a (hopefully) higher frequency of projects, new products, and posts now that this space is functional again!

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How to patch and repair drywall

We spend a lot of time in our garage, a LOT, but I always cringe when we have to take photos while we’re working on projects/tutorials/etc. Because until recently, it looked like this:

How to patch and repair walls It may just look like clutter, but it goes deeper than that. We tackled this project in two parts, (part two covers how we tackled organizing it and turning it into a workshop), but right now we are going to focus on the biggest problem we faced: The Walls.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com

You can watch the video that covers everything below, or keep scrolling for all our choices, steps, and tips in blog-format.

[Before we keep going, I want to pause and say if you have a second it would mean SO much to us if you’d like our video or subscribe to our channel. Since we’re brand new to YouTube, every view, like, and subscription makes a huge difference for us. Click here to see the whole channel. Thank youuuuu! We’re doing a big goofy happy dance right now!]

Specifically I’m going to cover how to patch holes (tiny ones, medium ones, and big ones), repair your corners (did you know drywall corner tape was a thing?) and paint (we tried oil based paint for the first time and it was not pretty).

1. How to patch holes

This was definitely the biggest part of the project because our walls were in ruh-uh-uff shape. We had hundreds of holes in our walls ranging from the size of a pin to large enough for me to crawl into. So we’ll go over how to fix tiny holes, medium holes, and big holes.

Tiny holes, aka anything smaller than a finger, are the easiest to deal with.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com For these you’ll need the following tools/materials:

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Start by lightly sanding over the hole with your 150 grit sanding block and wipe off any dust with a paper towel.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Then get a tiny dollop of spackle on your putty knife and press it into the hole. Drag your putty knife across the hole in a few different directions until the spackle is smooth and flush with the wall (this should just take a couple swipes)

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com The spackle we got goes on pink and dries white, so once it’s dry you can do one more layer (if necessary) or paint.

Medium holes that are bigger than your finger but smaller than 6 inches across can be fixed using a drywall patch.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com For these you’ll need the following tools/materials:

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com First use your poking device to scrape away any loose bits of drywall inside your hole.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Then sand with 150 grit sandpaper and wipe it clean with a paper towel.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Find a patch that goes at least an inch or two past your hole on all sides.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Peel the backing off of your patch and press it over your hole. The patches are a thin metal covered with a mess tape and the whole deal is sticky to adhere to your wall.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Now comes the fun part. Yes, this is fun for us.

Get some joint compound on your putty knife and press it over your patch, starting in the middle and feathering it away, making sure to go at least a couple inches past your patch.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Midway through this, I switched to a more bendy putty knife and it made this WAY easier. I dunno how you’re supposed to feather the edge with a stiff putty knife. Bendy knife fo’ life!

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Let this dry overnight and then come back and do a second coat. You’ll basically repeat the steps from before. First sand over any rough parts and wipe it down.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Then apply another coat of joint compound. This time you’ll want to feather the edges a little bit past your original application. So basically, the total area you cover is gonna be WAY bigger than the size of the hole you started with.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Most tutorials online will recommend doing a third coat as well. If this was inside our house or in an area that wasn’t going to be potentially covered with shelves/pegboards/various other storage type stuff, we would do three too. But for our garage, we decided two was just fine.

Big holes, aka anything larger than 6 inches across, require a slightly different technique. They’re too big for a patch like we used before, so you’ll actually need to buy a panel of drywall and patch your hole with that.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com For these you’ll need the following tools/materials:

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com First you need to cut a hole around your hole. Which I know seems counterintuitive, but it’ll make it possible for you to patch it with a piece of the drywall panel you bought.

Our hole was really big, and the panel we bought was 2 ft x 2 ft, so we held up the panel over the hole and traced it, that way we knew it would fit.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com If your hole isn’t quite that big, you would do things a little differently. You’d cut a square around your hole, then cut out a piece of your drywall panel that was the same size. You can either measure your square hole and then measure out what you need to cut from the drywall piece, or if the square you cut out is intact you can trace it onto your drywall piece.

That’s probably easier to do than it is to explain in text, so hopefully that wasn’t confusing. End goal: have a square hole in your wall and a square piece of drywall you can pop into said hole.

Once we had the outline of our square, we used a yardstick and utility knife to score along our line. It helps to have one person hold the yardstick and one person cut.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Then we cut through the drywall using our serrated knife.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com After it’s cut, you can pull out the drywall chunks so you’re left with  a clean square. Or a a square full of insulation from that one time we blew insulation in our attic.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com You’ll have a rough edge around your cut, so sand it with 150 grit sandpaper and wipe off dust with a paper towel.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Now it’s time to attach your piece of drywall as a patch. You need to attach it to something solid. If you have studs behind your hole like we did, you can screw it into those.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com If you don’t have studs, you’ll need to grab a piece of 1×4 and attach it inside the hole to the back of the drywall using 1-1/4″ drywall screws. Then, instead of screwing your drywall piece into the studs, you’ll screw it into that.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com So we popped our drywall patch into the hole we cut and screwed it into our studs on either side. We did three screws on the left, three on the right.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Then we used the mesh drywall tape to tape around the four edges around the patch. It comes in a roll and is similar to the mesh square over the metal patches we used earlier.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Next, it’s time to bust out your joint compound again. Just like we did with the medium holes, apply joint compound over your tape with a putty knife and feather out the edges with a nice wide bendy putty knife.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Again, we only did two coats of compound because we knew lots of this wall wouldn’t be visible once we got our storage systems up, and because ehhhh it’s just the garage.

Let it dry overnight, then scrape/sand away any rough parts, wipe it down, and repeat with more joint compound, feathering past the edges of your original application.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com 2. How to repair drywall corners

Drywall corner tape is used anywhere two planes of drywall meet (so two walls that meet in a corner, or where a wall meets a ceiling). The cheapo-type had been used in our garage and it was peeling in several places.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com To fix this, you’ll need the following tools/materials:

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com First use your utility knife to help peel off your old corner tape. Some areas will just peel off if you grab them, but for some it helped to have the knife to get it started.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Sand and wipe down the length of your corner, on both sides that are joining. Wipe off any dust.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Then spray the spray adhesive from about 6 inches away along the corner. This adhesive is specifically made for drywall. Don’t be alarmed, it comes out red.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com It takes a minute or so to become tacky, but you can apply your tape anywhere between 1 and 10 minutes. To apply, cut a length of tape from your roll that’s the same measurement as your corner.

Fold the tape along the crease so that it fits better into your corner.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com If one end of the tape is butting up against another corner (like a wall corner butting up against a ceiling corner) snip the ends off at 45 degrees.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Press the corner tape down your corner over your spray adhesive and smooth it as you go. It’s pretty stiff, so getting it smooth isn’t too hard.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com After about half an hour, you can apply joint compound. By now, we had gotten pretty good with this stuff. Spread it along the corner joint and feather it away from the corner.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Let it dry overnight, the sand rough spots, wipe it down, and repeat. As usual, with the second coat feather it out past the first application of joint compound.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com 3. Painting!

Holy holes batman – at this point, our walls were finally ready to paint!

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com We used the following tools/materials:

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com First, we walked around with our 150 grit sanding block and hit any last rough spots. Then we used a huge broom to wipe off the dust and cobwebs from our wall. We had a lot of both,

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Our paint does have primer in it, but we had one area in particular that we were a little concerned about that had both water damage and what looked like an explosion of black paint. So this area we primed first with Kilz spray primer just to be safe.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com While it dried we started painting other areas of the garage. We used Behr Ultra Premium plus in off the shelf white (in a satin sheen, for easier cleanability).

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com We first painted large swaths of wall with the paint rollers.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Then we went back and used a small angled brush to get around the edges and into corners that the roller couldn’t get.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Usually, people will edge first and roll second, but I can’t even describe how excited we were to cover those yellowy walls with white so we jumped the gun and rolled first (it’s way faster and more satisfying than edging!)

Side note, if you have to paint over the course of a few days like we did, you can avoid having to wash out your brushes and rollers each night by wrapping them tightly in foil and keeping them in the fridge. Definitely saved us lots of time and mess!

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com After edging around the door, there was this moment where we looked at the door, looked at each other, and simultaneously decided we gotta paint this door. It was sooooooo yellow looking next to the white walls.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com You can see it pretty well in the background of the photo below too. Ick.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Confession – we’ve never used oil based paint before. And our doors/trim had originally been painted with oil based paint, so we went back and forth between covering it with a primer and doing acrylic vs just going over it in oil again. We couldn’t decide, and neither could the internet based on our research. The folks at Home Depot said it would probably be better to use oil paint, so that’s what we did.

We started out dong the trim with our angled brush and we thought hey! This isn’t so bad! Then we tried to do the door and oh lord it was terrible.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Granted, we weren’t prepared. We started out trying to do the door with a roller, but we didn’t have a roller meant for oil based paint (we didn’t even know that was a thing). It left fuzzies everywhere, which we then tried to pick out/wipe off (only semi-successfully). Then we proceeded to paint the whole door with a brush since that’s all we had, but it had already started to dry in some areas due to our fuzzy-picking fiasco, so it was looking all sorts of messed up.

Luckily, it did smooth out a bit as it dried. Eventually we will try doing a second coat, but for now it is what it is – a learning experience haha. It’s at least better now that it’s white instead of yellow!

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com After the whole door situation, we just had to get one last hard to reach spot. Never saw myself sticking my head under a 400-something lb water heater, but you gotta do what you gotta do.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com It was worth it to get that last paint stroke!

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com Repairing drywall and fixing up the walls ended up being a big undertaking – I don’t think we realized quite how bad of shape they were in until we were already elbows deep in the project. But it was TOTALLY worth it. Our garage started out a yellowed, peeling, and full-of-holes hot mess. And even though at the end of it there are a still a few minor imperfections (cough looking-at-you-door cough), when we look around it is pretty sweet to look around and see smooth, white walls.

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com So glad to be done! And now onto my favorite part… how we organized the garage!

How to patch and repair drywall - evanandkatelyn.com ………………………………………………………………
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0

IKEA MALM dresser hack

Today we’re going to show you how we used $35-per-dresser worth of hardware to upgraded a couple IKEA Malms that until recently, looked like this:

DIY Dresser Upgrade And now… it looks like this!

You can watch the video that covers everything below, or keep scrolling for all our choices, steps, and tips in blog-format.

[Before we keep going, I want to pause and say if you have a second it would mean SO much to us if you’d like our video or subscribe to our channel. Since we’re brand new to YouTube, every view, like, and subscription makes a huge difference for us. Click here to see the whole channel. Thank youuuuu! We’re doing a big goofy happy dance right now!]

We were inspired by this discontinued West Elm Dresser to do knobs on the top row of drawers and pulls on the rest. If you want to check out the backstory and challenges we faced about hardware and dressers (riveting, I know) before I get to the actual tutorial, click here to read our last post.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com This ended up being a really simple tutorial that you could definitely tackle on a weeknight after work with just a few tools. Below is what we used:

Materials

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com Tools

We also ended up needing bolt cutters, a wrench, and a spare nut that fit onto our screw because we ran into a little snag with our screw length (more details on that later).

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com The first thing you have to do it make a big mess of your room by emptying all your drawers. Just think of it as an opportunity to get rid of that Panic at the Disco t-shirt that’s been shoved in the back for years.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com Then you’ll need to measure your drawers and mark each spot to drill for your hardware. Double check your measurements because having a bunch of mistake-holes in your dresser is a good way to ruin it.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com For the pulls, we measured the width of the drawer front, then the width between the two holes in each pull. We subtracted the pull-width from the drawer-width and divided that number in two, which told us how far we needed to measure from each side of our drawer. We centered those marks vertically.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com The knobs were easier. We just eyeballed what positioning looked good, made sure they were equally spaced width-wise from the outside edge of the drawer, and centered those vertically too.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com We recommend placing your hardware on each drawer front where you’ve marked before you drill. This gives you a visual check of how you did. When you feel confident that your ability to do simple math has resulted in the correct placement of your hardware, it’s time to get out the drill.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com To pick the right bit size, you can hold your screw up to several different sized bits and pick one that is just a hair thicker than your screw.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com We really like using a drill guide (that little metal bar we’re drilling through) to help us drill straight down (instead of at an angle). If you’re nervous about drilling through perfectly good furniture, I highly recommend getting one of these little guys.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com After drilling, we did hit a bit of a snag. See, hardware will typically come with screws, and ours came with two different screw size options. But sadly, we had a Goldilocks moment and one was too long and one was too short, but neither was juuuust right.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com This is a common issue to run into, so we’re going to share a little tip (so you can avoid going to Home Depot for the 10th time that day to pick up new screws).

Grab a set of bolt cutters and a nut that’s sized to fit your screw. Thread the nut onto the screw, then cut the too-long screw to  the length you need.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com Cutting it will deform the threads slightly, but that’s where the nut comes in. Grab the nut with a wrench and use your screwdriver to back the screw out of the nut. As you rotate it off over the damaged threads, it will re-shape them back to normal and boom, you have a perfectly-sized screw!

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com The next step is to simply attach your hardware with your screws. You can use a normal screwdriver or a powered screwdriver depending on what you have.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com Then just add your drawers (I guess you can put your clothes back now too) and give yourself a high five because you’re done!

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com This project really was super easy, and it ended up only costing us $35 per dresser. In my book, that is WAY better than dishing out hundreds (or even thousands!) on something new.

West Elm copycat IKEA hack, DIY dresser upgrade using knobs and pulls - evanandkatelyn.com Before…

DIY Dresser Upgrade After!

………………………………………………………………
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Twitter (us, in 140 character doses)
Facebook (be our friend)
Instructables (straight up tutorials)
………………………………………………………………
Note: This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting us!

1

Doing a mix-matched gallery wall

We have a lotttt of art. Evan and I both paint/draw, we have artists in the family so we collect art from them, and I have a tendency to save things that I think might make good art someday (a pretty page from a magazine or calendar for example). So yeah, we are overflowing.

Therefore, we’re no strangers to gallery walls. In fact, we have a 23 foot gallery that takes up an entire wall in our living room! But we’ve always played it safe in one regard – when we do frames our frames match, and when we do canvases we do alllll canvases. The living room wall has been 100% wrapped canvases until very recently. Here is a pic of how it looked when we first put it up, and it stayed that way for a couple years.

Doing a mix-matched gallery wall - evanandkatelyn.com

A few months ago we decided to start mixing things up and we added some black framed art to our canvas-dominated wall.

The other gallery walls in our house were all black frames – and not even different black frames, all the EXACT same black frame in different sizes. In our dining room I just recently added, prepare yourself, art with slightly different black frames. (those three with the mats…. yes, so different)

Doing a mix-matched gallery wall - evanandkatelyn.com

So after dipping my toes into the mix-and-match-frame pool, I decided it was time to actually jump in. The plan was to fill another wall and not be so matchy matchy about the frames, type of art, etc. The wall we chose for the job: our empty hallway.

You may have guessed that already if you remember seeing a few frames peeking out in our post about painting your yellowy fixtures white. That was somewhere in the middle of operation mix-match, but it’s evolved quite a bit since then. I’m going to show you how it turned out, and walk you through our method.

Doing a mix-matched gallery wall - evanandkatelyn.com

So there are two ways you can go about starting a gallery wall:

  1. You can look at the art/photos you already have and then go buy frames for whatever needs frames. Or,
  2. You go buy frames you think will make a nice arrangement, then buy/make/print things to go into said frames.

Because we wanted to get some photos printed and we had enough extra art laying around that we could fill various frame sizes, we went with option 2. If you have one or more specific pieces, option 1 might be a better bet for you.

We’ve tried a lot of different methods when it comes to putting up gallery walls, but in our experience the fastest/simplest route is to lay everything out on the floor in front of the wall, eyeball where the middle piece should go, and work your way out from the middle. Some people will recommend getting butcher paper, cutting out pieces that match your frame size, and arranging those on the wall with tape first, but I think that takes wayyyyy too long. I figure with our method, worst case scenario is that we have to move our art around and fill a few nail holes (or just cover the holes with more art, am-I-right?).

We already had extra black frames, and I wanted to incorporate some white frames, so I decided to get a mix of black and white, some thick, some thin, some with mats, and some without. I laid these out, along with some existing canvases.  The lower left and upper right canvases were just spare ones that I planned to paint over.

So here it is up on the wall. Meh. Something just felt kinda off and not cohesive (and I promise I was trying as hard as I could to use my imagination and see past the frame “filler images” and the smoke alarm with no face).

So I rearranged it to the version you saw from the vent posts. I painted the fern art, the cross-hatch piece in the middle of the bottom row, and the mountain piece in that’s cut off on the bottom left.

Doing a mix-matched gallery wall - evanandkatelyn.com

This was definitely better and we kept it like this for a long time. Then I saw the gold Target frames. I immediately bought three in all different sizes and knew I had to make them work somehow. But with our mix of unframed pieces (canvas), white framed pieces, and black framed pieces, I wasn’t crazy enough to add another variable. So I moved a few of these guys to the living room gallery, and painted any black frames that remained with a semi-gloss white spray paint.

After much rearranging, and finally getting off my butt to get some wedding and vacation photos printed, I landed on this layout and I love it!

Doing a mix-matched gallery wall - evanandkatelyn.com

Doing a mix-matched gallery wall - evanandkatelyn.com

Being in a long skinny hallway, it’s not the easiest to take pictures of, but hopefully this gives you an idea of how it turned out.

Doing a mix-matched gallery wall - evanandkatelyn.com

It was definitely worth the wait because we love the balance of art and photos, the various sizes and how they all play together, and the color scheme that ended up kinda materializing on it’s own (blues, greens, and golds).

Hope this shows that it’s ok for your walls to be continually evolving. It’s worth a few extra nail holes to just start somewhere, even if you don’t quite know where you’re going yet. After seeing how this hallway turned out, now I’m wanting to make even more changes in our living room and dining room – so expect more art wall updates to come!

2

Living room fan swap

Hey guys! So I’m continually realizing that there are projects we’ve completed that never got shared on the blog. Until some recent changes at Evan’s job, he would frequently have to work 11-12 hour days, and therefore I’d take on all the home/life-related responsibilities when I’d get home from work, so basically we had like zero time. We were honestly lucky to get any projects done, we just didn’t have time to blog about everything. So I’m here to gradually get you guys up to speed with the changes we’ve made.

First off is something we thought would be minor but ended up being a big upgrade in our eyes: swapping out our old living room fan.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

We’ve done a few fan swaps in our time, like the one in our office and the extra-difficult one in our bedroom, so we’re no strangers to the process.

It’s always good to start by turning off the power, you know, so you don’t get electrocuted. Then we laid down a drop cloth to catch any ceiling dust or screws that fell onto the couch. Caught a cat instead.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

Next we unscrewed the glass globes and lightbulbs since they’re the most breakable. Then we started removing the fan blades (you just unscrew them).

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

After the blades were off, we went to work on the drop rod and base of the fan. There aren’t tons of pictures of this because we needed two pairs of hands (that’s where the motor is, so it’s heavy!).

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

We disconnected the wires and reconnected them to the base of the new fan (you can see a great step by step of this here).

Then it was time to put the new fan together. First off, this is the one we got. We did a lot of research about what size fan we needed in order to get air circulation and light in such a big room, and this one fit the bill and our style. We’ve had it for over two years now and we still love it! I guess you could say we’re big fans…

To install it, we first added the drop rod and base of the new fan. The bulbs and glass light coverings were part of the main body of the fan so they were up at this point as well.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

Then we screwed the blades into place. It’s a pretty simple process.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

Last but not least, we swapped out our ugly 70’s dimmer, which we couldn’t even use because the old fan bulbs buzzed but were too high for us to bother swapping them out. We replaced it with a crisp white switch.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

Here’s the new fan!

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

So remember earlier when I said this swap ended up making a bigger difference than expected? It’s because our new fan has down lights AND up lights – and that is amazing! See, 90% of the time we only have the uplight on. Unlike our old fan (and most fans) that only shine down and cause harsh shadows on everything, the up light shins up on the ceiling and the light is diffused indirectly throughout the room.

And if we need bonus light (like when I’m making ornaments at the coffee table watching Gilmore Girls), we can turn on the down light and gain some bonus brightness.

Living Room Fan Swap - evanandkatelyn.com

Updating fans and light fixtures may seem like minor projects, but that kind of stuff has a huge bang-for-your-buck (and effort) effect on making your home feel fresh and updated. What do you guys like to do to your house that feels like a nice update, but really isn’t that hard?

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0

Upgrading Faux Gourds with Paint and Sugru

I’m back with more easy Halloween decor upgrades today! I’ve already posted about how we DIY’d pumpkins three different ways; with puffy paint, realistic paint, and metallic ombre. We also upgraded our black jack-o-lantern hurricanes by painting the insides copper. Then we turned felt pumpkin placements into a felt pumpkin garland.

Next my eyes turned to a couple heavily discounted gourds we got at Michaels that were just too cheap to pass up. This one is a texture-y ceramic pumpkin that was marked down from $20 to $4 because of a sale coupled with a damage discount.

Upgrading Faux Gourds with Paint and Sugru evanandkatelyn.com

It’s nothing a little Sugru couldn’t fix! If you’re not familiar with Sugru, it’s a moldable glue. Think clay meets glue, kinda like sticky tack but with a much better hold (and it doesn’t leave oily smudges all over your dorm room walls). In the photo above, we’ve already filled the hole with it, using some scrap wood to poke at it ’til the texture matched the rest of the pumpkin.

Upgrading Faux Gourds with Paint and Sugru evanandkatelyn.com

After letting it harden for 24 hours, I came back and blotted it with gold and copper acrylic paint. Good as new!

Upgrading Faux Gourds with Paint and Sugru evanandkatelyn.com

We also got this metallic gold and pearly white squash on sale for $2.50 (can you tell I’m digging the metallics this year?). It was meant to be in a bowl I guess because every one of them had this nub on the bottom that wouldn’t let it sit upright. Sugru to the rescue again! We molded it around the nub and created a little base that allowed the squash to sit upright.

Upgrading Faux Gourds with Paint and Sugru evanandkatelyn.com

After it hardened for 24 hours, I used acrylics to paint it cream with gold spots so it would look like part of the squash itself.

Upgrading Faux Gourds with Paint and Sugru evanandkatelyn.com

Upgrading Faux Gourds with Paint and Sugru evanandkatelyn.com

And now he can stand upright instead of toppling over. Plus the part I painted blends right in and looks like it’s part of the squash itself (unless you get super close)

Upgrading Faux Gourds with Paint and Sugru evanandkatelyn.com

Everything we used for these little makeovers we already had on hand (yay for free makeovers!). But even if you need to buy some of the materials, they are cheap and will last for many future projects. Hope these inspire you to take a second look on that tired decor you’re not loving anymore (I rhymed!).

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4

From Felt Placemats to DIY Pumpkin Garland

Hey guys! You may have seen Wednesday’s DIY decor post where I upgraded our black jack-o-lantern hurricanes with copper paint or last week’s DIY painted pumpkins. I’m here to continue the series of easy Halloween decor DIY’s with a story of placemats-turned-garland.

I had these four felt pumpkin placemats that I snagged from Target a few years ago. But they totally weren’t practical for two reasons: 1) who can use a felt placemat without messing it up?? 2) we have six table settings at our table and only four pumpkin placemats. That would just look silly.

Turning Felt Placemats into a DIY Pumpkin Garland evanandkatelyn.com

So I decided to cut out the pumpkins and use them as a garland! The first cut was a little scary, but after that it went quickly.

Turning Felt Placemats into a DIY Pumpkin Garland evanandkatelyn.com

To take the felt pumpkins and actually turn them into a garland (i.e. run a string through them), I cut out a tiny rectangle from the extra placement felt and glued the two ends of the rectangle to the back of the pumpkin, near the stem. I left the middle part of the rectangle unglued so I could thread through it.

Turning Felt Placemats into a DIY Pumpkin Garland evanandkatelyn.com

Turning Felt Placemats into a DIY Pumpkin Garland evanandkatelyn.com

I actually cut out the border of one of the placemats and used that as the string to thread the pumpkins together! Then I hung it over some art in our entry way, securing it by using binder clips to attach each end to the hanging wire on the back of the canvas. Very easy, and much more practical than using them as placements.

Turning Felt Placemats into a DIY Pumpkin Garland evanandkatelyn.com

Turning Felt Placemats into a DIY Pumpkin Garland evanandkatelyn.com

I could only fit three of the pumpkins across the art, so the fourth found its home in the middle of the “O” on our love letters. Luckily, he fit perfectly snug in there so he holds himself up, though if we needed to we could have suspended him using a little fishing line and tape.

Turning Felt Placemats into a DIY Pumpkin Garland evanandkatelyn.com

This project makes me think pretty much anything can be turned into a garland – black paper bats or tiny styrofoam pumpkins would be cute!

Turning Felt Placemats into a DIY Pumpkin Garland evanandkatelyn.com

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2

Upgrading Halloween Hurricanes with Copper Spray Paint

Are you guys still on a Halloween decor kick at your house? Because we are! But do you ever pull out decorations that you loved last year and think… meh? That’s the feeling that hit me, hence our three DIY pumpkin makeovers we posted earlier this week.

Aside from those pumpkins, there were a few more items in my Halloween decor bin that I had fallen out of love with.  So this is the first of a few quick and easy makeovers I did that will hopefully inspire you to take a second look at the decor you’re not crazy about any more.

First off, I had these black jack-o-lantern hurricanes I got at Target a few years ago that I honestly still really liked, but it was so hard to see their faces without a lit candle in there all the time. And with a kitty that likes to burn her whiskers on candles, that wasn’t an option for us. We also tried LED candles but they just weren’t bright/tall enough.

Upgrading Halloween Hurricanes with Copper Spray Paint evanandkatelyn.com

So I taped off their faces and tops (anything open really) and spray painted the insides copper using Krylon metallic paint. It was really quick to tape them off since you don’t have to be super exact.

Upgrading Halloween Hurricanes with Copper Spray Paint evanandkatelyn.com

Then I taped around the rim and added a plastic bag around the whole deal (I attached the plastic bag with the tape at the top rim).

Upgrading Halloween Hurricanes with Copper Spray Paint evanandkatelyn.com

Once they were fully protected, I sprayed away. Fun side note – when spraying spray paint into a cylinder, the spray floats out of the top like smoke. It was pretty cool looking, though damn near impossible to capture in a photo haha.

Upgrading Halloween Hurricanes with Copper Spray Paint evanandkatelyn.com

Now they look awesome! You can see their faces easily, and the copper + black combo is like a less in-your-face orange and black. Plus I love how the copper just barely got on the rim of the cut outs… it’s a nice little highlight.

Upgrading Halloween Hurricanes with Copper Spray Paint evanandkatelyn.com

Upgrading Halloween Hurricanes with Copper Spray Paint evanandkatelyn.com

I think a similar technique could be applied to other halloween decor like ceramic jack-o-lanterns or any type of candle holder with cut outs. Soon I’ll be posting a few more quick Halloween decor makeovers so keep an eye out!

Upgrading Halloween Hurricanes with Copper Spray Paint evanandkatelyn.com

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2

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways: Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre

We’re officially a week+ into October, meaning it’s high time for a fall decor DIY post up in here! Our strategy this season? Paint. All. The Things. Specifically, the pumpkins. I’ll save you some scrolling. Here are the final products:

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

We have quite the collection of faux pumpkins…some are of the nicer/sturdier/more realistic variety, some are covered in glitter, some are cheap on-sale gourds I painted white years ago, and some are those “Funkins” you can carve.

Our nice/sturdy/realistic pumpkins were good. Love em, keepin’ em as is. The glitter pumpkins I’m not in love with but I dunno if painting over glitter would work… unless it’s with more glitter haha. But the little cheap guys and the Funkins needed some work, so our paint brushes/spray cans were aimed in their direction.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

I wanted the pumpkins to look coordinated but not too matchy matchy. We had a few painting methods in mind: 1) Spruce some up with gold puffy paint, 2) Make some look more realistic using watered down acrylic, and 3) Give some a metallic ombre with gold and copper spray paint.

1. PUFFY PAINT PUMPKINS

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • pumpkins (real or faux)
  • puffy paint in a contrasting color (I used Tulip brand in gold)

Tiny white pumpkins: you sad little things. I painted you by hand with cheap craft paint for my first Halloween in my first apartment, but time has not done you well. Say high to my friend puffy paint.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

Originally I was going to spray paint these gold after adding the puffy paint. But then I started applying it and I loved the contrast between the white and the gold dots.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

The paint was suuuuuper easy and quick to apply. I dotted it in lines down the crevices of the pumpkins to emphasize their shape.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

It was really forgiving to work with too. At one point we accidentally knocked one over before it was dry and I just wiped off the parts that got messed up. The paint fully sets after four hours.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

2. MORE REALISTIC PUMPKINS

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • pumpkins (real or faux…. though if you’re trying to make real pumpkins look more realistic, maybe you need to stop and take a good look at your life)
  • acrylic paint in black and dark reddish-brown (white/cream too if you go overboard on the black like I did)
  • bowl with water (a plastic or styrofoam one you can toss later works well)
  • paint brush (I used one medium brush for most of it but did the tiny pumpkins and stems with a small brush. Probably could do it all with one brush though if you don’t want to buy two)
  • paper towels

Oh Funkins. Some of you we carved, some of you we didn’t, some of you we half-finished and we just turn you around so nobody sees. You shall meet my friend watered down acrylic paint.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

I started by of course finishing carving our Jack Skellington jack-o-lantern that has been half-carved for years. (Tip: use an X-acto knife on Funkins instead of typical carving tool sets. More effective, way better control. Tip 2: X-acto is how you spell it, not Exacto. Just Googled it. Who knew).

I combined black and dark brown paint with water until the mix was liquidy enough to drip down the pumpkin’s sides. I roughly brushed it on, concentrating on where I thought shadows would naturally be: around the stem, down the sides in the crevices, and at the bottom. This is by no means an exact art.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

After letting it set like that for 30 seconds or so, I took a dry paper towel and wiped it down. This took off most the paint but left a bit of a shadow behind.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

Then it was rinse and repeat. I did this process a couple more times until it had the imperfections and depth I wanted. Interestingly enough, it almost looked like it was made of weathered wood.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

Later I took it inside, and in the new lighting realized I made have gone a little overboard with the black. Watered down white+cream acrylic paint to the rescue! I brushed it where I thought light would naturally hit, on the raised parts of the pumpkin down the sides.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

I wish I used a little more brown and a little less black so it had a slightly warmer tone, but still overall I like him!

Lastly, I decided to paint the stem too. Because why put in 100% when you can put in 110%?? I used the same colors I already had out – black, brown, and cream. Below is how Jack’s stem was looking before. Then I used my three colors to mix a couple different shades or warmish gray tones and messily hand painted it on, following the same mental guides I used for painting the pumpkin itself: dark where shadows are (recessed areas), light where light hits (raised areas).

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

Done! I’d say it was worth the extra couple of minutes, especially when you already have the brush and paint out anyway. Even if you didn’t worry about shading and highlighting, and simply colored the parts of the stem that weren’t fully painted (thanks Funkin-factory!), it would make a big difference.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

In the end, it looks much more realistic instead of looking like a looming plastic imposter.

After doing this, I actually wished I had added some realistic shading to the two white pumpkins I puffy painted. So…. I went back and did it. You’ve already seen the finished result a few photos up in the “finished puffy paint pumpkins” picture, but here’s how it went.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

Paint on, wipe off, repeat until you inevitable go too dark again and need to add some white+cream back in. I did use a slightly smaller brush than before, but really brush size isn’t a huge deal. Overall, pretty much the same process as before.

small-faux-white

Of course, I had to paint the stem on this one too. I used the same method and brush as before. Darker paint in recessed areas, lighter paints on raised areas.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

After seeing the first one done (on the left below) it made me extra glad I was doing the stems. The unfinished one (below right) just looks sad…)

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

Done with both!

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

Lastly, I tested this realism-method with an orange Funkin.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

At first I tried using black+brown paint to add shadows, but it was way too graying on the orange. So instead I quickly wiped it off and switched to only dark reddish-brown, and this worked a lot better.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

This one ended up being way quicker and easier than the white pumpkins!

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

Finally, I painted this guy’s stem too. Same paint, same method, and same level of happiness that I went ahead and spent a couple extra minutes to do it. Before and after below:

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

All of these now look much better and have a lot more added depth. Real pumpkins aren’t flat, so adding a little color variation made a huge difference – especially in person. Also, even though it is several layers of paint, it was pretty hard to mess up!

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

3. METALLIC OMBRE PUMPKINS

Here’s what you’ll need:

Last but not least, I planned on giving a couple pumpkins the metallic ombre treatment. I did one of our large Funkins, and one the last of my tiny cheap painted pumpkins.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

Instead of doing a solid metallic, I thought fading from lighter gold on top to darker copper on bottom would give a little more depth and interest. So first I painted gold on the top, making sure to paint a little past the point where I wanted my fade to start, so that I could have some overlap. Well, on the little one I pretty much painted the whole thing since it was so small.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

This paint dries really fast so it wasn’t long until I could flip them over and paint the bottoms copper.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

To get a nice ombre fade, make sure to spray not too close and always keep your hand moving so that paint doesn’t get too concentrated in one area. Also, if you’re painting something carved like our big guy, make sure the paint hits the cut edge so that it’s not left white. And really that’s it! This was definitely the easiest paint method.

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

Well there you have it! Three different ways you can spruce up any tired/boring/fake looking pumpkins you have. Now these are officially added to our collection of “keepers”. Can’t wait to decorate our house for Halloween!

DIY Pumpkins, 3 Ways - Puffy Paint, Realistic, & Metallic Ombre - evanandkatelyn.com

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Patio Progress

It seems like most people get to enjoy their patios during the summer: backyard BBQs, pool parties, eating al fresco… This is not the case in Houston. We face temperatures in the upper 90’s most of the day, and when that sun finally goes down there are mosquitos galore. So unless you like being sweaty and/or bitten, summer down here is not prime patio time.

But fall. Fall is AMAZING. Fall is when we dust off the fire pit, bust out the projector (we use this one and LOVE it), and binge on Fixer Upper out in the crisp air. There’s nothing better.

Simple Patio Inspiration - evanandkatelyn.com

So in honor of it finally starting to cool off in Texas, we’d like to walk through our patio updates, which we haven’t shared much of on the blog. When we first introduced it to our backyard, it looked a little something like this.

Simple Patio Inspiration - evanandkatelyn.com

It’s come a long way, but we’ve still kept it pretty simple out here. The first thing was did was order some LED globe string lights (three sets to be exact, so you can see what that amount looks like on our 280 sqft patio as an example).

Simple Patio Inspiration - evanandkatelyn.com

We hung them using quick links that we hooked into eye hooks on our house, and into zip lines on our trees. Using the links made it easier to take down the lights or move them if necessary (since you can just unlock the links instead of having to unscrew or detach anything). There are probably about a hundred different ways you could attach these lights, this is just how we did it. They’ve held up well for a year now!

Simple Patio Inspiration - evanandkatelyn.com

The thing we love most about these lights, aside from the fact that they’re LEDs, is that the bulbs are plastic – meaning you don’t have to worry about them breaking if they get knocked around. This saved our butts when the storm ripped our gutter off the house and took the lights with it. It was a bad situation, but would have been way worse with broken glass everywhere.

We also got this timer for the lights. They come on automatically at dusk and you can set them to stay on for 4 hours, 6 hours, etc. Since they’re energy efficient, we love that we can have them light up every night. They’re pretty even from the inside.

Simple Patio Inspiration - evanandkatelyn.com

Even though they’re LEDs they have a pretty warm glow. Not straight up incandescent warm, but still very cozy :)

Simple Patio Inspiration - evanandkatelyn.com

Next up on our list was to create a secondary seating area. Spoiler alert: we found wicker lounge chairs and you can see them in the photo above. Even though we already had chairs to gather around the fire pit, space to chill and read sounded nice too. The problem is that outdoor lounge chairs can get expensive! Also, we didn’t want cushions because this space isn’t covered and it rains a lot – even outdoor cushions get gross. So we were limited to cushion-less chairs.

After lots of online shopping around we finally found these. Two wicker lounge chairs that looked nice, stored well, and were less than $350 for the pair?? Yes please (and thanks mom and dad!)

Simple Patio Inspiration - evanandkatelyn.com

We also got a couple of these cute teal side tables from Target that add a nice bit of color to a mostly neutral patio. We have one between the lounge chairs, and the other in the fire pit seating area.

Simple Patio Inspiration - evanandkatelyn.com

Last we added some plants. Some have thrived. Some have… not thrived haha. The cement gray planter and taller black planter are from Target, the shorter black planter is from Home Depot (some of these aren’t showing up as available online anymore). FYI, these plants are plumeria, aka the plants lei flowers come from. Apparently they do well in Houston!

Simple Patio Inspiration - evanandkatelyn.com

Well there you have it! This is where we are on the patio so far. We know this may not be the fanciest patio… but darn it we love it. Can’t wait til it’s chilly enough to light a fire!

Simple Patio Inspiration - evanandkatelyn.com

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