Three Ball Topiary
From Drab to Fab!
Topiary Make Over
Topiary Make Over
Silk flower spray protectant
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Three Ball Topiary
From Drab to Fab!
Topiary Make Over
I simply love topiary's and put them where ever I can! I bought these silk ivy three ball topiary's from a local florist several years ago. I first saw an identical set in my neighborhood and loved how they looked at the entrance. After asking the homeowner where they had purchased them I headed over to the florist to get a set. These were the last ones they had.
After several years on my front porch and the harsh afternoon sun beaming on them almost daily, the topiary's had definitely seen better days. The ivy started dry rotting and the birds have picked away at the moss until the only thing left intact was the grape vine. The florist where I bought them is out of business and I hadn't been able to find another set anywhere else, so I decided I'd give them a make over. They've been in the barn for over a year but with spring time approaching I wanted to have them ready to grace the front porch on my Craftsman Bungalow.
Topiary Make Over
Silk ivy garland
Silk flower spray protectant
Out With the Old Stuff
There wasn't much moss and ivy to take out but there was a lot of small strands of wire that had held the ivy in place and was still secured to the metal balls.
Removing the Styrofoam
The styrofoam was still pretty firm and in place. I used a filet knife I found in the garage to cut it. It was snug around the entire length and width of the boxes. I cut it into smaller sections and pried it out.
Blow It Clean
Since I was going to be using my air nailer for the boxes I went ahead and used the air sprayer to blow them out. The styrofoam had settled in between the wood so it was easy to get the nozzle down inside the boxes. A regular blower would've worked as well.
Sturdy Up the Boxes
My nail gun really came in handy for this project. It was so easy to reinforce the boxes and only took a couple of minutes to get each one finished.
Time To Paint
I bought regular flat brown paint for the frame and boxes and I managed to get two even coats on both of them. It's so amazing what a little paint will do...they looked brand new!
Add the Sealant
I like to use spar urethane on all my wood projects, especially the exterior ones. These topiary's will be housed on my front porch that gets the bright, afternoon sunlight. It's a good protectant against the UV rays and will extend the life of the paint.
Adding the Foam and Bricks
I don't do a lot of floral arrangement so I didn't really know what else to use in the base other than spray insulation. I do work with it a lot and I knew it would expand and get hard and I'd be able to add my greenery and moss to it easily.
I added a little foam so I could add the grapevine first.
I've long since cut down all my grapevine but fortunately my daughter has vines on her in law's property. So these were my freebies for my topiary project. P.S. Thank you Taylor and Mrs. Wanda.
I used about five feet of grapevine and three strands for each topiary. I had a mix of thin and thicker vines. The smaller vines were easier to work with although the thicker ones looked nicer. I started from the top and wove them around until I reached the bottom. By the time I got there the vines easily stayed put in the foam since it had starting expanding and was very sticky.
I added two bricks to each box. It's normally very windy on my front porch so I knew I needed extra weight to keep the topiary's from falling over.
I covered the bricks with the foam about half way the pots because I knew it would expand higher and fluff out toward the top.
I used the green floral wire to hold a couple of the vines together.
I took the green Spanish moss back to the store and exchanged it for the regular brown moss. After I looked at it a couple of times I decided the green moss and the ivy was just too much green and the brown is what was used in the first place.
I piled it in each ball heavily...
it got a little messy...
but looked very nice when I finished.
I started with the bottom ball and threaded the ivy garland upward from the inside.
It took a lot of ivy for the topiary's. I used one piece of garland on the bottoms of each ball and two more for the other four balls.
I could've probably used another strand of garland but I had spent more on supplies than I anticipated so I decided not to get anymore.
Moss For Pots
I used spray adhesive to cover the flat green moss to top of the pots. I loved the variation in the colors and it blended very well with the overall colors scheme of the topiarys.
I love adding bows to my topiary trees. I went with burlap bows for the spring season. I will switch these out with each holiday and changing of the seasons.
Three Ball Topiary Trees
I sprayed the topiary's with silk spray protectant. I've never used it before but hopefully it will keep protect them a lot longer than the previous ones.
I think the entrance is complete and I'm very happy with the finished look.
My grandchildren love nothing more than swinging, so I took a little break one weekend from my old house restorations to make them a new tree swing.
ITEMS I USED:
-heavy duty fasteners
This is the old tire swing that was hung for my seven year old son twenty nine years ago. The rope finally frayed in 2015 and the tire swing broke. I kept it in the barn until the next summer when we could make the tree swing a family project.
My daughter and granddaughter were eager to get the project underway so they got busy scrubbing and cleaning the tire.
I purchased two cans of bright red gloss paint for our lady bug tire swing.
We picked a very hot day when the wind was calm to paint the tire. Since it was so hot outside, the paint dried quickly after each coat. I used both cans of paint and sprayed both sides evenly.
The tire was very easy to paint and was ready for hanging after a few hours of drying...and it's so pretty and glossy!
I marked the tire where I wanted to insert the U fasteners and used a regular drill and drill bit to make the holes. I screwed the bolts to each U fastener using a washer so that they would not pull through the tire.
I bought three equal lengths of chain along with a longer chain that will hang from the tree and support the three chains attached to the tire. I used stainless steel snap links to secure the chains to the U fasteners on the tires.
I used a carabiner link to attach the individual chains to the chain hanging from the tree.
After the tire was hung my grandchildren were excited to paint the lady bug on the tire and write their names on the swing.
We used acrylic paint for the lady bug and markers to write their names.
Voila...Lady Bug Tire Swing!
DISCLAIMER: I am not an electrician or an appliance technician. This blog is a diary on how I replaced the burner switch on my own personal stove. Please consult an experienced electrician for repair of your appliance.
How I Replaced a Burner Switch on my Stove
During our busy summer the large burner on our GE drop-in stove quit working. While our stove is old, we weren't ready to spend money on a new one, so I headed across town to get a replacement burner. To my surprise this was not the problem as the eye still would not turn on. After calling the technician at the store where we purchased the burner, he said I would need to replace the burner switch. According to him, I just needed to remove a couple of screws...123...I'm done!
My husband was busy with other projects and hadn't had a chance to work on it, so after a couple of weeks I decided to try to put it in myself...but first I thought I'd go online and see exactly how to install it. Unfortunately, I couldn't find anywhere that showed me how to open the control panel on this drop-in style stove but I did find a few sites on how to switch the terminals. I also found the instruction manual that came with the oven but it didn't provide any info on replacing the switch or how to open the control panel.
Tools I Used
-small star screwdriver
-2 pairs of pliers
Turned Off the Breaker
First and foremost safety is always on my mind. I went to the breaker box, found the breaker labeled "range" and turned it off...otherwise, I would've definitely gotten electrocuted!
Removed the Screws From the Stove
I started by removing the four screws on the front of the control panel as seen below. They were small screws that required the star bit. After taking the screws out I kept them together so they wouldn't get misplaced. I tried lifting the control panel upward but it wouldn't pull out completely. After trying several times I could tell something else needed to be loosened.
Loosened Side Screws From the Stove
There's four screws on the left and right sides that held the control panel in place. They too had to be loosened in order to pull out the control panel.
Removed the Knobs From The Stove
This was the perfect time to clean behind the knobs so I took them all off...doesn't take long for grease and grime to build up. I removed the two screws holding the switch in place before I removed the control panel cover.
GE Control Panel
After removing the side screws the control panel lifted out with ease. I realized later that the four side screws needed only be loosened and didn't need to come out completely. The side panels just needed to be loose in order for the control panel to slip forward.
Removed the Metal Plate on Control Panel
There were many screws holding the metal plate that protects and houses the wired components. They all had to be removed in order to replace the switch kit.
Once the control panel was open I could see all the wiring and connectors that were attached to each switch.
I'd already removed the screws that held the switch in place so I simply slipped the switch out from the control panel. The terminals were labeled and I was able to easily switch the connectors from the old switch to the new one.
Connected the Terminals on Switch
There wasn't any corrosion and no need for cleaning. Once the terminals were in place on the new switch I positioned it back in place and secured it to the panel from the front of the stove. I attached the knob and checked the stove to make sure it worked before I closed up the control panel.
Re-Fitted the Knob
The stem for the knob holder was too long for the knob so I used a pair of pliers to break off the excess and another pair to hold the stem in place so it didn't break off too short. I attached the knob and checked the stove to make sure it worked before I closed up the control panel.
This was a fairly easy DIY project. I had some difficulty getting the side screws back in the right position while trying to close the control panel but other than that it was a good learning experience. My stove is like brand new and it only cost about $25.00 for the switch kit.
Pelmet, Cornice & Box Valance -Styles & Designs
Several years ago when I began decorating the farmhouse I inherited, it never occurred to me that I would one day have a DIY blog. With the majority of projects I completed I never took step by step photos detailing each step. But fortunately, I do have photos and I'm very happy to share those with you.
- 1 X 4 boards cut to size
- miter saw/circular saw/jigsaw
- staple gun
- spray adhesive
- kraft paper
- batting or foam
- nails or screws
- lace, fringe, ribbon or cording
- hooks for hanging
No Sew Window Treatment
These are all no sew window treatments. Each piece of wood was cut with a miter saw and/or circular saw and jigsaw. Spray adhesive is used to adhere the batting and fabric to the plywood. All fringe, ribbon and cording were attached with a hot glue gun. These are all easy DIY projects.
A basic rectangular shape covered with toile fabric and batting; trimmed with black cording and fringe. This cornice covers two windows.
Living Room Window Treatment
Using two complimentary and vintage styled fabric and batting; creating a design with ball fringe.
Bedroom Box Valance
For these cornice boards I used brown kraft paper to design a shape for the window treatment and transferred the shape to the plywood. Cording outlines the top and half circle design.
There are many styles and designs of cornice and pelmet window treatments that you can create that will enhance your beautifully designed living space.
Barn Wood Welcome Sign
I love using antique barn wood from my farm. There's just something special about using reclaimed wood, especially when you grew up around it and know its history. This piece came from the smoke house and will now adorn an entryway, foyer or porch.
-wood (new or old)
I drew a one inch border around the wood to give it a border.
Antique Barn Wood
After I sanded smooth & cleaned the wood I painted it with a mossy green acrylic paint. My favorite projects to make are antique & distressed signs. This sign will be 20" long X 6" wide.
Painting on Wood
I painted the border with black acrylic paint and used a small angled brush.
How To Use Transfer Paper
I printed the letters using New Times Roman font and used transfer paper to transfer the words to the wood. Position the words exactly where you want them...make sure to center the letters all around the space and tape down using masking tape.
I'd misplaced my stylus so I used a ball point pen to trace the letters. The barn wood was very wavy with a lot of grooves so I had to be patient and take my time outlining each letter.
I outlined the letters using a black Zig marker.
I wanted a little more detail so I added a white line around the border using a white zig chisel marker.
...I had planned for this to be the last step but I wasn't quite satisfied with it...it needed something else!
Add a Shadow to Letters
I decided to shadow the letters with the Zig chisel marker.
Now the fun part...I love it when it's time to distress the wood! My daughter helped paint the sign but she painted it a little heavier than I wanted...so there was quite a bit of sanding to do to achieve the look I wanted.
...and more sanding wood!
I added some Burnt Umber acrylic paint to a small amount of glaze and wiped it over the entire piece of barn wood. I wanted to tone down the moss green color just a little bit.
...finish with a protecting spray in a matte finish and the project is complete & ready to display.
If used outside I would hang this sign on a covered
porch and out of direct sunlight as to avoid fading.
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I've been an avid DIY'er for over 15 yrs & have worked on all types of projects, i.e., drywall, electrical, painting/staining, faux finishes & carpentry.
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Goodness Grows in North Carolina program.
Post Office Box 48367
Cumberland, NC 28331
Sale:s (910) 824-4386
Fax: (910) 920-9194
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