Wednesday, June 27, 2012

How to Make a Suitcase Table

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
As a crafter with a collection of supplies, tools, and general knickknacks, I am a person in need of some storage space. I'm not a huge fan of plastic bins and labeled boxes because they just seem so classroomy to me-- I like my storage to double as decor. So what better way to store things than with vintage suitcases? I already keep a lot of my supplies and out-of-season clothes in my stacked suitcases, and I have a stash of fabric and beads in the suitcase table my parents made me for Christmas, but I wanted to try to make a suitcase table on my own. (*On my own: Defined as getting directions from my dad and grandpa. While I know how to use drills, Mod Podge, paintbrushes, Polaroids, and sewing machines, I am a bit intimidated by things like drill presses and table saws. So that's where the older generation hombres come in. ;))

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
And before I begin, there are a few shortcuts that you can take to make a suitcase table of your own. First off, you can buy an end table like the one in the picture above and screw a flat suitcase to it. Or you can use a flat suitcase and skip to step number six. Or, if you're a confident DIY'er, use a slanted suitcase. They're easier to find in thrift shops anyways. :)

How to Make a Suitcase Table with a Slanted Suitcase:

By: Stacie, Milt, and Tommy. :)

You need:
How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Thrifted suitcase, table legs, a ruler, level, a square, and hanger bolts.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 1: First you need to set your suitcase on a flat surface. With your level on the top of the suitcase, raise the suitcase so that it is level. Then you need to measure the gap between the ground and the raised portion of the suitcase-- this will be the difference in the legs.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 2: Now you need to measure how long you want your table legs to be, ie: the height of your table. After you've measured the difference in step 1, mark that difference on your legs where you want them to be cut. My suitcase was raised one inch off the ground, so I measured one inch difference in the two legs. Saw the legs along your marked line.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 3: To make sure the legs sit perfectly flat on the ground, you need to cut the tops at the same angle that the suitcase slopes. With a sliding t-bevel, measure the angle of the suitcase. Lock it in place.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 4: Place the sliding t-bevel against the power miter saw. Adjust the angle of the blade to match the angle of the suitcase.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
(Adjusting.)

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 5: After you've made the angled cut on the leg, mark the top of the slant so that you remember which way each of the legs go later. It's just helpful.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 6: Now take your hanger bolts and screw the screw side into the top of your leg. (Most of the legs should come with a hole already drilled in them.)

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 7: Like this. The threaded bolt portion of the hanger bolt sticks out of the top.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 8: Now you need to measure around the edges of the suitcase and mark the spot you want to place the legs. It should be even all around. My legs were 1.25 inches in on each side. Drill holes around the suitcase evenly and place the bolts sticking out of your legs in each of the holes.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 9: Secure the leg with a nut and a washer. My grandpa made his own washers with steel, but you can just buy washers that fit around your hanger bolts.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 10: Bam. Test it out. Preferably next to your very helpful and awesome grandpa. ;)

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 11: Now you need to prop up your suitcase on its suitcasey belly and measure the distance between the table legs. This will be for the bottom shelf of your table that will keep everything secure and wobble-free. (I used a piece of pine for this. Pine is for painting. ;))

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 12: A drawing of the future shelf with the correct measurements.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions Step 13: Now you should measure the width of your table leg with a caliperat the height you want your shelf to sit.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 14: Mark all of your measurements on the piece of wood you'll use for the shelf. The little square box in the left of the photo is the size I needed to drill for the leg, and the little boxes are the correct width apart equal to the distance between the table legs.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 15: Drill your holes. I used a drill press because it is a lot more exact and there is less room for human error, but you can also use a regular drill. I used a 1'' bit.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 16: Sand away anything rough.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 17: After you've drilled all the holes, set the shelf on the legs and adjust the shelf so that it is level.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 18: Secure that shelf in place. My dad used a pneumatic nailer with 2'' brads to do this.

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 19: Check your work. Woohoo! :)

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
Step 20: Mark off the suitcase with tape and paint the legs!

After you've painted the base, you've got a nice piece of upcycled home decor! Good to store all of those Christmas decorations, random doodads, and of course-- craft supplies. :)
How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions

How to Make a Suitcase Table: Instructions
:)







Monday, June 25, 2012

DIY Anthropologie-Inspired Photo Transfer Polaroid Shirt with Mod Podge

Mod Podge Photo Transfer Shirt
It's no secret on this blog that I am a huge fan of good old Mod Podge, so when I got the chance to review some of Plaid's new products in the Mod Podge line, I was really excited. Those Mod Podge scientists have been concocting some really cool new formulas. :)

Some of the new ones:
Mod Podge Photo Transfer Shirt
There's now Outdoor Mod Podge, Antique Mod Podge, "Dimensional Magic" Mod Podge that behaves a lot like resin for jewelry-making, Hard Coat Mod Podge, Super Gloss Mod Podge, and so many more.

For this project, I used the incredible Photo Transfer Mod Podge, and I was seriously blown away by the results. If only I had known this stuff existed earlier. Le sigh.

Here is my inspiration:
This gorgeous blouse from Anthropologie. As a huge photo dork and lover of the snapshot aesthetic, I love this shirt. And I am so happy I was able to recreate the look.
My version:
Mod Podge Photo Transfer Shirt

I bought my shirt at Goodwill, and I chose to go with a chambray shirt instead of a white one because white shirts tend to be short-lived in my closet. ;)

What you need to make the Anthropologie-inspired shirt:

Mod Podge Photo Transfer Shirt
-Shirt
-Photo Transfer Mod Podge
-Fabric Mod Podge (Optional. I wanted my picture to be secure.)
-Picture printed with a LASER printer. Inkjet printers do not work for this. It's got to be a laser printer.

First you need to cut out the photo and lay your shirt out flat. Then brush on a layer of photo transfer Mod Podge on the printed side of your image. You should have a layer of Mod Podge about 1/16'' thick. It will be all white, you don't want to see any of your image.

Mod Podge Photo Transfer Shirt
Then you need to lay the image in place flat on your shirt. Let this dry 24 hours.

Mod Podge Photo Transfer Shirt
And now to the magic part. After the photo has dried for 24 hours, get the paper wet and start rubbing it off. You might have to do this a few times until all the fuzziness of the paper is gone, but it is incredible how the photo stays in place after such rigorous rubbing. I placed a thin layer of fabric Mod Podge on top of the finished product to make myself feel better, but I'm sure you can use a little bit of the photo transfer Mod Podge if you don't feel like buying another bottle of the stuff.

And about washing this shirt-- it says on the package that you can wash the photo transfer medium in the washing machine, but I will probably wash this shirt by hand. I didn't believe that the photo transfer would be machine-washable when I first read the package, but after I went to town scrubbing the paper off the fabric, I believe the directions. ;)

Mod Podge Photo Transfer Shirt
And voila!

Mod Podge Photo Transfer Shirt
Who says Mod Podge is just for crafts? It is such a fun medium to use on clothes. :)

Mod Podge Photo Transfer Shirt

And a gratuitous picture of *one* of my mom's gardens...
Mod Podge Photo Transfer Shirt

Want more Mod Podge ideas? Check out these other awesome projects in the crafty blogosphere. And be sure to follow Plaid on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest. They are one crafty brand doing the Internet right. ;)

And here are a few other projects I've made using Mod Podge:


Disclosure: I wrote this post as part of a paid campaign with Plaid and Blueprint Social. The opinions in this post are my own-- like the fact that I think both of these companies are totally bomb-diggity.com. ;)


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