How to make old mulch look new again

Hello friends! I hope you’re getting in the mood for fall. It’s been tough here in Pennsylvania, as we have seen record rain fall that just.won’t.quit. Of course, right now our thoughts and prayers are with those affected by Hurricane Florence!

Today I thought I’d share what’s going on outdoors at our place. Honestly, we’ve had so much going on ALL OVER THE PLACE, it’s been tough to chronicle it here on the blog. We have been busy with the most recent flip house and other projects … and I promise, there are some epic before-and-after photos around the corner. 😉

During a very brief break in the rain this week, I was able to plant a few new trees in our front yard and also add some mulch from our backyard mulch pit.

The problem with old mulch is that it looks pretty raggedy, even though it’s still good to use.

I was recently introduced to a new product through the Rust-Oleum® Creator’s Studio. It’s called Rust-Oleum Renovator Mulch Color Refresh, and it’s supposed to make your old mulch look new again! I volunteered to try out the product because … well … we’ve got some raggedy-looking mulch up in here.

You don’t mix this stuff with anything. You just dump it into a pump sprayer and apply it to your old mulch.

Here’s what my old mulch looked like with a coat of the Color Refresh in Brown.

Here’s a closeup of what the mulch looked like before … and after applying the product.

Pretty cool! I only used about a fifth of the 1-gallon jug to do my three trees. The jug says a gallon will cover up to 350 square feet. Bonus: I love the fact that it washes off your hands with soap and water … an important feature for this messy DIYer. 😉

The Mulch Color Refresh gave a great pick-me-up to my front yard. Now I just need to plant some grass in those bare spots …

Have you done any landscaping yet this season? I’ve heard the best times of year to plant trees and shrubs are during months that have an “r” in them.

I’ve personally had much better success with tree and shrub survival when I plant in the fall. Happy fall planting!

DIY metallic barn board sign

Hello friends! I have been a DIYing fool this summer … knocking out projects left and right. The problem is … I’ve been so busy with the projects that I haven’t had much time to chronicle them here on the website. #bloggerfail

I’ve got a renovated patio set to show you – would you believe I PAINTED the cushions, and they actually turned out well? I’ve also got a refinished china cabinet to show you. Plus some even bigger news! I’m closing tomorrow on another house I’ll be “micro-flipping.” More details coming soon on that.

But today I want to show you how I created an enormous (as in over 7 feet tall) “Gather” sign for my dining room using an old barn board, some inexpensive MDF letters from A.C. Moore, and metallic paint I had on hand.

My inspiration for this project came from Pinterest. (Where else?)

Source

I started with an old barn board, which I cleaned with a bleach-based product to get rid of the dirt, critters etc.

After the board dried in the sun, I sanded it really well to smooth out any rough edges. I then cut it to the length I wanted (7’5″) using a skillsaw.

I stained the board using a mixture of darker stains I had in the basement. I think I used a concoction of Kona, Walnut and Mahogany stains. Wow, that reminds me … I really need to clean out my basement. I’m soon going to be accused of hoarding. #nokidding

I used an orbital sander to distress the piece after the stain dried.

I painted the MDF (that’s medium-density fiberboard) letters – purchased for $2 apiece on sale at A.C. Moore – with a combination of different metallic paints from Modern Masters and Royal Design Studio – mostly metallic black, bronze and pewter.

After the letters dried, I lined them up and stuck them to my board using a hot glue gun.

Here’s the finished result:

What do you think of my DIY barn board Gather sign? I love how it turned out! And it only cost me a total of about $12 to make.

Have you made any projects using old barn boards?

2 lake-inspired, thrifty DIY projects

Hello friends. Today I’d like to share with you two recent DIY projects I completed that are inexpensive and easy to do.

The first is this LAKE sign I added to my bathroom as part of the master bathroom renovation. This project cost me zero dollars because I already had all the supplies on hand. 🙂

Step 1: Cut a piece off of a weathered wooden pallet. I used a skill saw for this part.

Step 2: Sand and stain/finish your board of choice. I chose Varathane® Kona Metallic Polyurethane Finish.

Step 3: Print out letters in the font/size of your choice on a regular printer.

Step 4: Turn each letter over and run chalk over the whole back of the sheet of paper.

Step 5: Turn the paper back over, placing it where you want it on your piece of wood. Then use a pencil to trace the outline of the letter. This will transfer a chalk outline onto the wood.

Step 6: Using an artist’s brush or paint marker, fill in your letters with the paint color(s) of your choice. (I used Command Strips to hang the piece on the wall.) Done! 

Project No. 2: Lake-themed porch pillows

My front porch pillows were looking a little tired, so I decided to update them with new fabric.

I chose the lake-themed fabric on the bottom right of the photo. I found the fabric here.

This is indoor fabric, which I treated with a spray water repellent. So it works best on a covered porch. If your pillows will be exposed to the rain/weather, I would recommend choosing an outdoor fabric.

I cut four equal squares, then flipped the fabric over, sewing the pieces together at the edges.

When I got to the last 3-4 inches, I turned the piece right-side out, stuffed the old pillow inside, then sewed the last bit together. Voila!

So there you go … two quick and inexpensive DIY projects for summer.

Have you done any crafting/DIYing this summer yet? I’d love for you to share your project in the comments section.