Design, DIY Before & After, DIY Decor, DIY Inspiration, DIY Organization, For Sale, Furniture Revival

From railroad shipping crate to unique coffee table.

I love it when something ordinary jumps out at me and I instantly see how it can be extraordinary.

Last month I came across something that stopped me in my tracks, (pun intended)… An old Railway Express Agency shipping crate.  It was worn, dried out, beat up, and begging for some true old fashioned TLC.

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Without hesitation I hauled it home, where it has been sitting in the corner of my living room, until last week when I finally decided to move it out into my workshop where I have a line up of projects ready to tackle.  I figure if I added it into the line up, there would be a better chance that I would be inspired to work on it!

I immediately knew what this old crate needed and I got to work.

I started by scrubbing it down and using tack cloth all over to make sure there wasn’t any loose dust or particles before I went to the next step.

Next, I added two coats of clear Zinsser Shellac. 16015-10-1000

I was working in my work shop on a mid 80’s day, so the Shellac dried extremely fast.  I was impressed at the dry time, and it didn’t leave any sticky feeling behind.

I added Shellac to the entire exterior, interior, and lid.  Once the Shellac was dry, it was time to add on the caster wheels.  I picked these wheels up a few years ago and have been waiting to find the right project to use them on.  This was it!

Adding the shellac pulled out all  of the historical characteristics, markings and words.  I love the transformation that shellac does to wood! It is a beautiful process!

I remember during my childhood when my dad would ask me to assist him with projects and it would always make me feel so special to help him, even if it was just handing him nails, I felt so important.  Now, when I work on projects, I try to find a task somewhere during, that my kids can help me with, hoping that when they grow up, they will not only have memories, but will have useful skills that they can use too!

I asked my son R to help me with the caster wheels.  He is usually a little hesitant with projects, but with me showing him an example and putting the first screw in with the hand drill,  he jumped right in and took over.  He is 13 now, and I feel like time is flying by, so I want to be the very best mom possible and teach him all that I know, while he is still here with me!

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Adding caster wheels is not a complicated task!  Don’t let it scare you! Caster wheels come in many different sizes and you can get ones that swivel 360 degrees, or ones that only roll backward and forward in a straight line.  I always get the ones that do a complete swivel, this makes it so much easier when moving things around, especially if it’s something like a coffee table that gets pushed and pulled in all directions by everyone

After he added on the four caster wheels, it was time to add some pulls onto the lid, for easy opening.  This is when my son ran way.  Hah.  I give thanks that he stayed with more for at least a small portion of my project!

The pulls were picked out by my 8 year old daughter. We were looking for something rustic that looked like it had always been a part of this old crate.

Since these pulls had a bit of a bump out on the bottom where it would meet the crate, I ha to measure the size of that bump with the drill bit gauge. (Pictured above on the left). I used that size drill bit to go into the wood just as deep as the bottom of the pull needed to go in, then on the underside of the lid, I drilled in a hole that was one size smaller than the screw for a tight fit.  I didn’t have any pull screws on hand that were the right size, so I made due by placing two washers in between the lid and each screw so it was nice and snug and secure.

One the pulls were installed, it was time to sit back and smile at another project well done and another piece of forgotten furniture brought back to life and rescued!

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This is currently available for purchase as well!  If you are interested, please shoot me an email at endlessacres @ live . com .  Or you can also contact me over on Facebook.

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Design, DIY Before & After, DIY Decor, DIY Inspiration, DIY on a budget, DIY Upcycle, Home Decor Inspiration, In The Home, Room makeovers

Front porch to home office transformation.

“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.” – Theodore Roosevelt

I fully believe in that statement above. I believe that by practicing gratitude, a positive attitude and making the best out of every situation, no matter what it is, that our lives have the potential to be nothing less than amazing!

We have lived in our early 1900’s farm house for 4 years exactly this week!  In the four years here, I had not yet taken the time to set up a home office.  I have spent the past few years, however battling Lyme Disease + co infections, so my healing has taken most of my attention.  This past week, I felt extremely motivated and inspired to dig back in to my passion, regardless how I am feeling health-wise or whether or not my pain is intense, I will push through it .  I do not want to allow an illness to take me down, to discourage me, hold me back, and most of all define me.  I am not my illness, it does not own me, I will heal, I am healing, and I will continue moving forward into Gods amazing plan for my life!

On Sunday, I had a little buzz in my heart to turn the porch into a home office, where I will  have the space to write about my latest DIY projects, where I can create, dream, set goals, smash goals and inspire all of you from in the comfort of my own home! The porch has always been, ‘the dogs room’, because no one else wanted to use it, since it wasn’t exactly the most inspiring and fun place to hang out in with it’s old floral basket wallpaper.   It is time.  Time to change all of that!

With a little bit of money, and a whole lot of motivation, I headed into Menard’s to purchase porch floor paint and stain for a desk.

All day Sunday I worked on painting over the old floor tiles with porch paint. This is a temporary fix until our budget allows for us to redo the flooring.  My daughter, Camryn picked out the Icy Mint color.  We chose to use Dutchboy’s skid resistant porch and floor paint in ‘Minted Ice / 16WW’.    Keep in mind this is a very budget friendly makeover, it wasn’t planned and as time and money allows, more improvements to the area will be made!  (Like windows, flooring, new doors, comfortable desk seating:) , etc)

Okay, so you’ve made it through my little intro story and are now probably wondering where the photos are!  So let’s get to it!

Here is what our little front porch looked like before, as it was when we moved in.

Not that inspiring or relaxing of a space, is it?

Yesterday, also known as Monday, I spent 8 hours straight working on the the porch.  I did not run to town and spend any more money to decorate and put it together, I simply just shopped my own home, and below is what I came up with!

Most of the maps that you see on the walls,were my Grandparents, that I got after my Grandpas passing, some maps even had their routes circled & car trouble notes:) , the desk is made from 2 bookshelves my dad built when I was a child, my Grandpas old ladder & a piece of $13 wood from Menard’s with Minwax classic grey stain, that my daughter also picked out.

The silhouettes in the corner, are my Grandmother’s, as well as the flower frogs which I am now using for pen storage on the desk.  The little rocks on the window sills are heart shaped rocks that were curated from along the shores of Lake Superior, from my mother, my sister and some that I found also.

The sweet house drawing that is placed on top of the US map is painted by my daughter Camryn.

I could go on and on about all of the little details. There is family , heart and soul tucked all over the space and I am beyond excited to start creating in this area!  I look forward to the wonderful words, ideas, conversations and inspiration that happen here!

About 95% of the items that I used to complete this project were items that we already had around the house & outbuildings & I gathered today to use & decorate.  When decorating a space- shop your own home & other rooms first, before you head out and spend money!  You will be surprised at what you can come up with!

As a reminder, here is what the porch looked like, before:

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Here it is now.  I hope you see the love, effort and creativity that I jammed into this small little area!

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Well, my friends, there it is!  What do you think?  Not bad for throwing it together in less than 24 hours right!?  I am so excited to finally have a work space in our home! Leave a comment below on your thoughts, I would love to hear your what you have to say!

Wait! Before you go, let’s connect! Did you know that you can also find me over on Instagram @endlessacresfarmtiques & kellymwhitman , and also on Facebook for more DIY inspiration?!  I hope to see you over there!

Have an awesome & blessed day!
– Kelly