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Gallery Wall Break Down

October 19, 2011 in Living Room, Wall Decor

It’s Wednesday! Time for the gallery wall break down! I attempted pictures at all times of the day hoping to find the ideal lighting. Let me tell you… it was NOT easy!  I apologize for the poor picture quality, but I tried my bestest.

Keep in mind… this is a WORK. IN. PROGRESS.  Right now it’s pretty much just pictures of my pets (shocker)… but in the future I have plans to swap it out with some found and some made art pieces. I’m getting the itch to get crafty!

Ok… here we go!  Here’s the before of this wall.  This picture is AWFUL, but it’s the only “before” I could scrummage up. Isn’t it funny how terrible so many of our pre-blogging photos are? 

….and here it is today!


You can see a snippit of the SPOOL TABLE I just finished. Loving it! The dresser I picked up on Craigslist last year. Someday I’ll have to share the full story behind it. It has a LOT of history and I love it. The plant is 23+ years old and was given to me after my Grandfather’s funeral. It’s commonly referred to as “Grandpa’s Plant” in our family. The PUMPKIN on the dresser is the one I detailed how to make a couple weeks back.



This picture of the “M” is probably the most accurate picture of it’s color.  I wanted an M for my wall but was having trouble finding what I was looking for. One morning I got a crazy idea and decided just to try to make one. Probably a good thing my initial is a simple letter! I distressed the heck out of it and stained it. Doneskies!

I took this picture of Sylvester one afternoon while hanging out in the pasture. It was snapped with my iPhone, but I got really lucky with the light!

This is a reprint of a photo my Grandma has.  The picture is of a gas station my great-grandfather owned in Illinois waaaay back when. If you look closely you can see his name on the sign and even a person in the back seat of the car. My great-grandfather is actually standing in front of the station. How cool is that?!  I feel so lucky to have a photo like this. :-)

These two will probably be replaced eventually, but for now they’re happy right where they are. The top pic was taken underwater in Cancun last year. I’m riding on one of those submersible scooters! The pic of Emma cocking her head was taken when she was 4 months old. She’s sitting on the couch and I just happened to have my iPhone handy to catch one of her ridiculously-cute moments.


…..and now for the other side!   Quinn’s not one to be shown up, so she thought she’d try to strike a cute pose for you here.

….what a little tyrant. :-)    ….and oh WOW. Taking pictures of my wall made me realize how many of the frames are CROOKED. Going to have to fix that. ASAP.

Emma’s hanging her head out the car window in the top pic and Roxy is modeling her bed in the next.  Oh! …another Sylvester picture. (probably no suprises there).  WOW – I really need to put something other than pics of my pets on this wall!!!  I’m starting to sound like the crazy dog girl.  (Stop nodding in agreement…. especially YOU,  Karen!)

…and one last picture. Of Emma. Man, why do I have to be SO predictable?!  I love that she’s sticking her tongue out. A photographer snapped this pic of her while I was out at the barn doing some filming for work. Pretty  much sums up her personality perfectly.

So what do you think?  Is the gallery wall an improvement over the “before” arrangement?


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Pottery Barn Sign Knock-off

October 5, 2011 in Building and Repurposing, Gettin' Crafty, Living Room, Wall Decor

Yesterday I showed you my “do what you LOVE what you do” sign. Well, today I wanted to show you another sign that my sister and I tag-teamed.

She saw this Pottery Barn numbered canvas in the Pottery Barn catalog and it was love at first sight. It’s definitely more than made it’s way around the blogger community. Everyone seems to love it and want to make their own versions for their homes!

First thing’s First – Design Layout and Size

For Christy’s sign, she created the design in Microsoft Word and I printed it out on an overhead projector transparency sheet. Click below for a PDF version of the design you can use on YOUR own projects!  (No need in all of us doing the same work over and over again)

Pottery Barn Knock-Off – Numbered Canvas PDF Download

UPDATE – I’ve heard from many of you that the PDF will not open.
Please feel free to email me at and I’ll will send it to you directly!

Page 1 of the link above will show you how she wanted the numbers to run off the edges and Page 2 is the one I actually printed. That way I could just move the projector further back and get the design lined up on the sign just the way she wanted it.   I knew she wanted the sign to be 4 feet wide and just needed to determine how tall the sign would need to be to correctly line up the numbers. So I projected the design on the wall so that the image was 4′ wide and simply measured the height. Done-skies!

Next step – Build the Frame

I made a frame of furring strips and thin “fill-it” strips (explained here). She wanted her boards to be as close together as possible rather than spaced like in my version. I attached the strips with small staples working from the outside edges in. This allowed me to space out a few boards towards the middle to make it look perfectly imperfect. After the frame and strips were all done I gave the sign a single coat of Minwax Dark Walnut. The wood soaked up the stain so quickly so there really wasn’t much excess to wipe off.

Project and Copy the Image

Bad blogger!  I don’t have pictures of the next couple steps, but I think you’ll understand if I talk you through it….

I hung the sign on the wall, lined up my projector and went to work copying the image onto the wood. I used a white chalk marker (like these) to copy the design. I knew Christy was going to paint the numbers white so I thought it would be easier to paint if the lines were white as well.

Transport…. and Learn

My sister lives in Tulsa. I live near St. Louis. Thankfully I have a small SUV so I laid my back seat down flat and put the sign face down in the cargo area. My dogs were also along on the trip so I had to put a flat-pack metal kennel on top of the sign and then tossed on a big fluffy dog bed for the pups to lounge on during the 6 hour drive. Long story short… I should have glued the strips in addition to stapling. When I placed the sign upside down and put weight on it, some of the strips popped loose of the frame. It wasn’t a deal breaker, just meant that Christy had to go back and glue some of them and tap the staples back in.

Paint and Hang

From this point on it’s ALL Christy. She did such a great job painting on the letters. I think she took a couple nights to do it ever so carefully using latex paint. Atta girl Kiki – it looks UH-mazing!

Okay, Okay… enough yappin’ Dana. Get to the point. Here she is!

Isn’t it awesome?! I am totally smitten with it. I think the dark wood and crisp white numbers really pop against that awesome navy wall.

Take note of the round ottoman… yup… she made that – out of a coffee table!  She’s handy, that girl. I tell ya!  Thanks for sharing pics of your room Christy.

…and as always, if you decide to make your own Pottery Barn Sign I would LOVE to see your version!  Send me a link to your post or even email me a photo – craftedniche{at}gmail{dot}com  We can feature them here at CraftedNiche and on Facebook to help get people’s confidence and creativity going!

Big Thanks to Home Stories A2Z for hosting her weekly party!

Be sure to check out all the awesome link parties where I’m linking up this week!

Special thanks to these awesome blogs for featuring our sign!

Home Stories A2Z The Shabby Nest

Joining the fun at:

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