Thursday, June 26, 2014

A Dedicated Space

So my brother generously donated his office to us so we could use it as our business headquarters. He cleaned it out and left us with a blank slate.

My plan for this room bounced around between ideas- I wasn't quite sure what to do with this blank canvas and I had a budget of $100. That's all I was willing to put into getting this room together. 

My first stop in trying to figure out this room was Joann Fabrics because I had a chair I wanted to cover (which ended up not going in the room) and/or I wanted to make some cheap curtains. I found a few fantastic options but my only problem was that I didn't think they would go well with some of the other 'bakery' items that I had already that were pink and green like our business color scheme. They were also above my extremely cheap price range. 

On a whim I decided to go to Walmart for some cheap curtains and then maybe I could decide what I wanted to do from there. 

I found these and I thought they were extremely cute and bonus, really inexpensive. Plus, they were a shade of green that would definitely go with our bakery colors. 

I also found a 5' x 7' rug at Fred Meyer on sale for $27.99 and brought the table up from the downstairs area because it hardly was ever used as anything but a catch-all and a launching pad for the cats to hurl themselves off of. The canvas near the window was already owned and is there to cover some anchors that the previous tenants left in the wall. I haven't figured out what I want to do with it yet.

I love the antiqued look of the mirror that had been previously black. I only gave it one thin coat to achieve that look. It's a cheap mirror I bought two or three years ago at Family Dollar for $10. The flower art was something Mom had that was in the yard sale pile and I thought the colors went along pretty well. 

These are Pike Place Summer blooms for $15. This bouquet is SO heavy too! I never cease to be amazed at their beautiful flowers and how extremely cheap they are. 

Budget breakdown:

White shelf: $23.99 (Target)
File Cabinet: $5.99 (Thrift Store)
Clock: $6.99 (Target)
Bulletin board: $7.29 (Target)
Fleur de lis plaque: $11.99 (Hobby Lobby)
Curtains and Curtain rod: $27.94 + $13.99
Rug: $27.99 (Fred Meyer)
Total: $126.17

All other artwork or paint used was already owned.

I wanted to make it under $100 (because with this truck I do NOT have much to spare) but I came close. I had a curtain rod I had wanted to use that I already owned that was just a tad too short... grr. That's the way it goes, doesn't it?

It's not bad for just a cheap little office project and it's great to get all of our stuff organized in one place rather than stuffed in cabinets and spaces all around the house. 

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Graphic Content

This morning we picked up Bertha from our graphics company after they spent Monday and Tuesday of this week working diligently to apply our decals. When we pulled around the corner of the building and saw the truck for the first time, I nearly burst into tears out of happiness. It's an amazing feeling looking at something that was such a long-sought and hoped-for goal that has finally been accomplished. 

Sometimes when you've got a huge task ahead of you it's hard to step back a moment and savor the little victories and how far you've come. Sometimes once you climb one mountain, you're too busy looking toward the next that you don't notice that you have climbed this huuuuge mountain! 

We still have a rather large to-do list but... just look at how awesome this looks!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

What's On The Menu?

Our truck needed a menu board that we're going to hang on the middle window. We also thought it was a good idea to make a sandwich board, that way people passing would be able to see our offerings without having to stand facing the truck to read the menu. 

We stumbled upon these two chalkboards at HomeGoods. They were $39 each but considering that they were 1) already together and matched 2) cheaper than the other options I was considering (like building them from scratch with frames) and 3) adorable- Mom and I each bought one. 

We toyed with a few ideas about what to do with them and settled on using a crackle finish to give them an old time-y and worn feel. I found some crackle medium at Michael's (Plaid brand). I was going to go with Martha Stewart's brand but read some not-so-awesome reviews. Mom has used Plaid brand products for years so we thought it was a safe bet. 

I simply taped off the chalkboard and applied one layer of white paint. After the white paint was dry I liberally applied the clear crackling medium with a sponge brush and let that dry for at least 30 minutes. 

While that was drying I set to work on my main menu board that we found on clearance at Hobby Lobby for $20, a steal. The texture looks like chalkboard but it's not so we bought some Krylon chalkboard spray paint. 

I taped off the sides and gave the surface two even coats of chalkboard paint (this was my first time spray painting so I did have a drip or two, I'm not perfect, so I quickly dabbed the drip and went over it lightly). 

After the chalkboard paint was dry I did the same procedure to the menu board as the sandwich boards- white paint, crackle medium. 

This was my first time using crackle medium and it can be finicky! Only go over the surface ONCE or it will smear and look kinda goopy. 

Yeah, kinda goopy looking at the top there... :(

I think they still turned out pretty well for having never done the crackling before.

Despite my best painting tape application methods, I did have some leakage. It mostly came off with some water with a q-tip but my perfectionist tendencies didn't stop there- I used some black acrylic paint to touch it up and look really clean. I figured we aren't going to be writing on the extreme edges and it should hold up pretty well. 

My next step for the two boards was to hinge them together with some hinges I bought at Wal-mart. They were just simple, non-decorative hinges.

I thought I'd have to drill holes for the screws but the wood was soft enough for me to just screw them with a screwdriver. Just make sure the hinges are facing the right way!

I did buy some small chains that I was going to apply on each side at the bottom to insure that the board could only open so far. I tested it out with just the hinges and it stays up pretty well without them so I think I'll just save them for later. 

I'm so excited to place this outside the truck, isn't it adorable!? Ian seems to enjoy it.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

The Taming of the Hue

I've been working on a few little decor projects. I needed some wall art for a space I'm going to share later and I needed them to be bakery color-themed. I had this octagon frame (that I rescued from the dumpster in Virginia a while back), a dollar store mirror, and I bought this bulletin board for $7.39.

I decided to paint the mirror white and the other two the same dazzleberry pink that I used to accent the file cabinet that I shared yesterday.

I figured out an arrangement (minus the mirror, that is hung elsewhere), picked my scrapbook paper to fill out the frames and... voila!

But, I was underwhelmed. I'm already NOT really a pink person and I felt like the octagon frame was bombarding my eyes with PINK! 

I had some crackling medium leftover from another project (that I'm going to share later) so I decided to go for it and use the white paint over the top to subdue all that PINK! 

The crackle medium is a little fickle and I think the frame was too weirdly shaped to make the crackling look really nice. The end effect was a weathered and vintage look which wasn't bad either. 

I found some cool, inspiring quotes and used PicMonkey to make my own typology art for free and printed them out. (p.s. if you look on Pinterest and search for 'free quote printables' you can find a ton of awesome prints that way... who doesn't like free, non-mass store produced artwork?)

"It always seems impossible until it's done"- Nelson Mandela

"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all." - Helen Keller

These two quotes were perfect things to remember in the midst of all our worry over the food truck because sometimes you just need a reminder. 

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

File Me Up

Days are blending together and going by at lightning speed! Half of June is over already! We were really hoping to be on the road and selling treats by now but... there's always set backs and things you don't account for. 

I have been finding time between it all to get a few little projects done. Like... this cute little filing cabinet I found at a thrift store for $5.99. All it needed was a little paint to bring it from looking drab and dingy to bright and chipper (and ready for business paperwork filing, yay!...).

I used a little roller to paint a few coats of white paint and two simple coats of pink (Dazzleberry, Valspar I think) on the sides for a little glimpse of color on the drawers. 

Maybe down the road I might want to replace the handles because they're kinda boring, but they're not too offensive for now. I'm not sure how the paint will hold up because of the particleboard surface of the cabinet but it'll work for now. There's always touch up paint...

Monday, June 9, 2014

No Junk In The Trunk

A couple weeks ago we took a little visit over to Snohomish, Washington which is a great place to find antiques. One of our favorite stores, Faded Elegance, has a mixture of antiques and new, weathered vintage items. 

We stumbled upon this amazing trunk there marked for $130. 

And this amazing trunk...

And this amazing trunk!

After much deliberation, the first trunk won out. We tried to pry it open in the store and the store employee said it wasn't able to be locked- and it was locked. She said we could take it to a locksmith and she'd take 10% off because we couldn't open it. Sold!

It's now our living room coffee table and has replaced our little $20 Ikea one. 

This plaque inspired me to do a little search on Mendel Trunks. I'm guessing our trunk was made around the 1920's-30's. I found this website explaining a little more on Mendel trunks. 

Promoting itself as “the Aristocrat of Luggage,” the Mendel-Drucker Company of Cincinnati, Ohio, manufactured this sturdy metal wardrobe trunk in the early 1930s for what it called the “class market.”

This trunk features an enclosed compartment for clothing on hangers, as well as several drawers for shoes, accessories, and folded items. It was also made with special gaskets, interior dust curtains, and sturdy bolts and locks to protect the owner’s expensive garments from moisture, soot, and theft.

I never really thought about trunks being so sophisticated before. It makes our modern day suitcases look really... boring and impractical. How awesome would it be to be able to have your own little mobile wardrobe wherever you went? If you just forget about how incredibly heavy these are you might be tempted to use one!

Ok, maybe not... I'll take my little boring suitcase with wheels. 

Just a side note: imagine what the person who used this as travel gear would think about us using it as furniture in our home?